Hypochondria of the Heart
A teaspoon is the precise size of childhood. An egg cup,
almost. Lid lifted off an egg. The happy inevitability of an egg
yolk. Breakfast happens before the body. Light full of small
animals—dust, birds, flies. My tongue is still dreaming. I
make coffee in my favourite mug. Later on I might feel
embarrassed. But now, for now, I am famous with possibility.
Only in the morning is there enough room to efficiently exit
this form. I am dust, bird, fly. I look great in this light. Butter
makes the knife saintly. Sleeve slips, mouth slips. My
handsome dog wears her stilettos across the wooden floor.
Light gets bigger, bringing in the table edge, the old wine
glass, the elbow. An audience might applaud my scene.
Knife licked clean, teaspoon sucked clean. The mirrors I
make are the only mirrors I like. A piece of eye or nose in the
blade, the curve. When I am alive it is extraordinary
A sculpture has just emerged from bed.
Gone, sleepily, to the middle of the gallery
floor. Queer recognition is difficult
to explain, except: each knuckle has a
slight ache.What else? I avoid the eye of
the security guard. Down the back is a
peculiar flight, something as shameful as
disappeared wings. Intercostal muscles,
paused in bronze, answer a specific desire.
I want enough time to run down my
fingertip, enough time to enjoy the same
lick as light across the ribs. My footsteps
form a loud circle. A procession, I process.
In the gallery sound has a certain precocity.
I catch the security guard’s belt buckle
instead. The sculpture’s ears, their size, have
heartbreak. Maybe chiseled out of spite?
A glance rejected in a different room.
Another hurt detail of the otherwise
impossible. Nose, nipples, bellybutton.
Can’t keep a hurt detail down. We’re
talking hip to hip. The security guard’s
tie is loosened, tightened. Naturalism is a
horrible word. Even gesture gets a second
chance, in the eyelids especially. In the
brow too, an exhaustion barely concealed.
This one isn’t heartbreak but the long
attempt to be only casual. I came here to
have a nice time, it’s working