Posts Tagged ‘pandora’

The scholars argue if it were a box or a jar.
No matter. She opened it, Pandora.
It was a gift, and she treated
it as such. And what does it matter
how quickly they spread, all the evils and ills
the gods gave to humanity? The point is
they spread. All Pandora did was lift the lid.
I read today that a red blood cell
can make a full circuit of the human body
in less than 20 seconds. Of course I wanted
to give it a name, that theoretic cell.
Like loneliness. I could imagine it rushing redly
through every part of my body, infusing all tissue
with its terrible news. You’re alone,
it says, you’re alone, you’re alone.
In a minute, I’ve heard it enough
to believe it, though other red cells
sing a different tune. Sometimes
in the face of loneliness, all other
songs turn to sand. I’m lonely,
I say to my lonely reflection,
and who will hold my hand?
And anger appears from behind
the vase. And pride shows up
beside the door. There is a box
somewhere inside me. I don’t remember
opening it, but the lid is long since gone.
I, too, was gifted with curiosity.
You were a gift, I say to anger,
you were a gift, I say to pride.
But I am too tired to believe it.
I watch myself as if my life is a movie,
watch the loneliness make its rounds inside.

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As a bundle of hay, when carried,
becomes heavier and heavier,

so it is with words we swallow.
They begin, light as the leaf

of a forget-me-not, light as
a golden straw of hay, just a hair

heavier than breath. But the longer
the words go unsaid and the more

of them we swallow,
the more they gain weight,

the more they cripple us unspeaking ones,
and soon it is as if we had swallowed a bed

of river stones. Sometimes
we can no longer move at all,

so burdened we become. Sometimes
it takes a complete falling apart

to release all that weight, all those
pent words. No one wants this, of course,

some great spilling. The gaping wound.
The chaos. The words, and the fear

wrapped around them, exposed.
But it is not so bad as we think.

Sometimes, once bare to the sun
and clear air, the words break out

of the calcified layers
and we see them for all they are,

tiny boxes into which
we pack our worst fears, our dreams,

our anger, our desire, our bliss. We open
the boxes and whatever inside has not
turned to dust grows wings,

and our mouths open, perhaps in awe, perhaps
wishing they’d fly back in.

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