Celestial Egg

                      “They’re not deviled eggs
                      because Lucifer was once an angel.”

At the bar you order
a small white plate
of celestial eggs.

Holy mayonnaise
yellow topped
with chives.

They are gulped
except for the last,
which you offer me

through telepathy.
I am the egg.
When I stop throbbing

is when I live
so I hold it high
in our five spotlights.

The arena cheers.
I see many doors.
Five floors:

on the bottom, death,
but each row above
a plethora of possibilities.

In your car, you say
I am feeling unmoored,
my shoe half-out your door.

The renaissance is what we
make. It is brown paint
over everything, the oil

light– you ask, what is on
your mind? I don’t know
how much you know

but I felt the warmth
of the machine beside me
thrumming on the street.

You were on the phone,
I think. I glared– I think
the end is coming

faster than fresh ideas
or the universe’s
rate of expansion.

The fact you drove
saved me from running
through the dark city

in the center of my existence.
In the shadow room
inside my house,

I did not process
emotion. The throbbing
sprain in my foot.

It was that death
issued a rain check
when I smacked my head

in the basement bar
of the indie theater.
I was the movie

everyone watched.
I left everyone waiting
for me to emerge

from the sewer. I swear
I will not group up next time.
I want each synapse

comprehended. To succeed
would be the stretchy fabric
of my living. Nylon

for the brain. Procrastination
for the ascent. I say you need
not worry because I am not

worried. Depression is a shovel
deep in soil and I am buried
in my mind, thankful

to be given a second
heaping of kindness
when I never deserved the first.

Hard to learn you
when my body is uniformly
jagged and growing

hairs sharp like knives
eternally out of every inch.
I want to be tender

with you, but once
I eat, all mysticism
is lost to process.

(originally published in Academy of the Heart and Mind, Spring 2023)

Consuming Raw Chicken

can be severely detrimental, but don’t panic–
salmonella can be killed. You must know
its internal temperature. If not fully known,
your risk of distress increases. The dark tunnel.
The bones. If you suffer from adverse effects,
you will know within seventy-two hours.
Chills, fever, fatigue. Hallucinations.
If there is blood in you, inform your doctor
immediately. He may request a sample
to determine if you are alive, if symptoms
are what you’re even there for.


(originally published in The Blotter Magazine, Summer 2017)