The world and I dance a fine line
between glacier and wildfire, but
it's my body that sometimes flubs the tightrope.
Here I go, flipping
like a pendulum gone insane,
desperate for steady orbit,
a hot star scrabbling at one side and the
universe’s freezing hands grasping at the other.
I've grown armor made of ice: the greaves,
the cuisses, the pauldrons. I'm thinking maybe
if I tremble hard enough, I can shake
my legs and shoulders free.
My down comforter is a useless furnace and
laughs at me. The afternoon
is depressingly grey.
My down comforter is a furnace and someone
has stretched holiday plastic wrap across the sunset.
The light leaks eerily red through my window
like maraschino cherry juice, like twilight
on Mars. I am a human space heater with
a second skin made of sweat.
The covers are tangled on the floor.
Millennia ago, it seems I sped along as fast
as any spinning planet, as innately
balanced as the earth for life and
living—for summer wind and winter scarves and
children laughing on the lawn—but perhaps
I am imagining
My dreams fractalize:
Shiver. Run. The city grid.
Burn. Sit down. The sidewalk cracks.
Shiver. Swallow sand. The network of my capillaries.
The head on my neck is swelling;
it is filling with cement; it will
explode by dawn.