I wash my brain with laughter, or get it done at the library,
where the books wait in their stacks, feigning frivolity
for the sake of my habits and addictions. We used to think
the mind could become orderly, clean, but then comes
Freud with his Oedipal shoes and penile eraser heads. Sure
felt like home to me. My mother never seemed the same.
And my father believed me. Which explicitly explains
how books communicate with each other thru the unconscious
minds of authors on one level, their readers’ on another.
My books read me, place my involuntary self open
on the author’s shelf of receptions. Disaster scenarios aside,
what did you have for breakfast tomorrow, or the next day?
The answer has already astonished your future memories,
depending on when you are. And whether you accept
that the items on your grocery list are plotting to erase you
during sleep. If you don’t believe it, you’ve obviously never
read Lord of the Flies. Like the indiscernible transition
from a scream into a howl, we all have squeeze-toy arms
ready to fold space. Listen, when I was a turtle, I put away
turtle things, and now that I’m a man I still feel nudges
from the shape-shifters, their plastic fingers posing under
this cumbersome shell. Odd how even the rain, with its tiny
hands, becomes what it touches. And this poem with its prayer
of ancient trees, its gentle encyclopedia of unknowing.