Naming It
Published in Downtown Brooklyn, Number 16





Short Fiction




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Naming It


Down, like this, is a burning apple

in the pit of the belly,

making red disappear like

rabbits in hats and

pale legs in half boxes.

I am down.

All seems forgotten

in a haze of morning blue,

the same haze that shined

brightly the day before.

But all I can see today

is the way the icicles

turn grey near the muffler,

dirty. And the man’s hat

has red and black checks

and my belly is on fire.

I find I want to ask questions

but I can’t say them out loud

because then they’ll turn to smoke

and drift until they find the person,

the thing, the situation

that is supposed to answer them

and I won’t be there to hear it.

I will be here, chopping the apples,

making slices fit for a pie or an appetizer

or the kind of snack you eat with

whole milk in the afternoon

instead of biting into them

with fake teeth.