For a while her fingers are matchsticks
at the instance of first flicker—

the sun sets on her forearm—

& the flames spread to each letter
on the cover of a book
that is yet to be written by water.

What else is there to be found
in the forehead but a river?
& across the river:
a mountain of cheese.
She licks the cheese off each crease
on her elbows,
even then as she hesitates
to step onto the escalator
in the shopping mall of her mind.

(Her elbows where mosquitoes
reside in stale waters.)
(Her elbows
where elves reside in abandoned anthills.)

Her elbows have the shade of old wood,
the topmost layer of flan,

the surface of a corkboard on w/c a note
is tacked—
What is your name?

At the shopping mall, the small
of her back. On the small of her back—
a volcano. A salesman approaches
from the mouth of the volcano

& asks: Would you like to take

a trike, ma’am/sir? & she does.

A tricycle to the bedroom & she leaps
onto a pillow then sighs. By the window,
a stalk of swaying bamboo.
She pulls

the note from her elbow & writes
on a leaf her reply,
makes love to the wind

like light on the slightest hint of glass.

Montage Vol. 9 • February 2006


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