Poetry - Birthday Fugue

Other Poetry

Disturbed clouds wing the sky, my stomach

roils with migraine.

Yesterday, a wet drive up the coast
from a class I didn’t need.

These past two months living alone
in a house my husband wishes I’d never found.

Meanwhile, two voices, one called Stay, the other Go.
Stay is heavy, angry, strong, weighing in at three hundred pounds.

Go is the one with the wicked migraine. She doesn’t
sleep. She drives clutching the steering wheel as if there’s always a storm.

Go appears to be conscious, but Stay often has no
recollection of her, forgetting Go for days at a time.

Stay liked the class, asked questions, walked without an umbrella.
Go slumped in the corner, turned from the teacher, stared out the gray window.

Go wanted to leave early, cried in the bathroom.
Stay yanked her by her scruff, hissed, You’re forty-three.

Leave me alone, Go says every night to Stay.
You’re ruining my life, Stay says to Go.

Go rubs her forehead, moans, asks for help.
Stay rubs her round belly, demands more cake, more ice cream.

The wind throws acorns at the house, the car
slicks up the road. The class is bad. The candles burn out.

Stay calls her husband. Go hangs up the phone
No one remembers anything.

 

thesmokingpoet.tripod.com, June 2008.