Jennifer Metsker & Kendall Babl

UNINVITED IMAGES ARRIVING TO THE LIGHTLESS SHALE OF SLEEP


i.

In this poem light is a friend 
and the brain in its saline enclosure 
does not know light. 

It is you, its interface with the world 
who knows to remain in light.

Even fractured, the skull cannot avail
the brain of light. 

The incessant caring for the life in your body
is a custody battle between you and the sun.

ii.  

Deep in the ocean the loss of light 
is too great so you surface to a chalky
drawing of constellations. 

You destroyed two houses this way, 
drowning in depths
where others could not reach you.

In the black of winter,
you returned to the landness of the land,
the flavor of its soil, but you could not find 
release from gravity. 

iii.

On a glowing screen 
blind pallid chemotrophs 
clambour toward a diffusing array
issuing from lightless sulphur vents. 

High above, the ambition of spined things,
lumbers into unanticipated financial ruin.

Standing, you connect 
heaven and earth. Standing, 
you make heaven your lung 
and the ocean your piss.

iv.

The gregarious sun 
fills the cold hallways
of your anarchic rental endgame.

You turn from the scorched earth
and corroding hulks of prior disengagement 

to the ocean inside. 
Oxygen reaches the deep country of cells
carried on dark ferrous blood 

into an aviary of Hedera helix
strangling as it climbs. 

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