Four legs and arms. Duo of stacked bone columns.
Two skulls and noses, quartet of ears,
Thirty-two teeth in jaws, twice counted. Two pairs of eyes—
brown/brown green/green—under four closed lids.
Twenty fingers and toes, and different sexes each tucked
between a pair of thighs. What creature rolls
under those white sheets? Twice the brains with how
many canyons and ridges and, inside those sulci
and gyri, double the dreams and poems embryonic,
within twin foreheads gleaming
like porcelain plates in the coming light.
The dream happened in my house:
I threw him (her) out the window.
The newspaper which I hid under the chair
had something to do with it and I was suspected.
My father (mother) searched my room.
I even went to church but when I got
there the service took a pause. I was scared
of being caught. And sorry.
You know, the dream’s your fault. In the afternoon
we made love and I felt like crying. You
with your miner’s lamp unearthed
the dark veins. All the ores
venial and mortal, mine (unmine)
pick-axed, shoveled, sorted, washed, rising up
through the house, out the window, filling the silent
church. Even the sorry going, going.
Susan Nisenbaum Becker’s poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in The MacGuffin, Crab Orchard Review, The Harvard Review, Poetry East, and Calyx among others. Susan has received numerous Local Massachusetts Cultural Council Grants and she has held many prestigious residencies. Her first full-length book of poems, Little Architects of Time and Space, was published by WordTech Communications/Word Poetry in 2013.