Sunday, December 2, 2007

A Poem for Dropsy

A Poem for Dropsy
by Connie Coady


I met you once, cutting cheeses and bread with a dull knife in Jacks' cluttered and molding kitchen. The refrigerator light had gone out and one of us was a little bit hungover. A white paper bag of wasted pastries on a wire shelf next to cheap wine and nothing. I could see you halfly, and could tell your eyes were bigger than your head and imagined your head being heavy and making you turn circles in your grim water. The water was black and green and the walls of your home were black and green and I couldn't tell if you were black or green or something else entirely. We acknowledged you, but after that, there was little indication that you were still in the room. You, your peachy skin ; we, distracted by our own more sun-worn flesh.

Feeling guilty I wrote you this poem:

A seizure in my breakfast, milk

Your home. My porous Fruit-Loops

Your pulsy, bangled body

Clouds evict your skyline

The rooms of your home stolen
through the walls and window.

A compromise is half your body

A tail is half, the other parts I don't know

much about the anatomy of fish

When we sleep do you speak a voice like noon?

Or tell secrets to your argonite, calcite,

dappled neon wasteland?

I push your Penn plax jewel stones

and wet my sleeve to grip you with my

fingers and put you on my open tongue

and swim you through my mouth and throat.

I'd comb your hair
if you had it; take you to the park
on Sundaysin my pocket little lint
under your armpit, your heart and lungs
a scaley denim tomb.

Dead before the train came.

We sunbathe anyway in for me
the grass a blanket, for you
a thousand tiny teeth.

I'd let you live there, my babbling belly.
You can hear us

drink like fishes, gulping til our lungs hurt,

swallow boring jealousy, the walls and contents

of our own homes, all of us
blind of the oceans inside us.