By Mary Jo Bang

The story is written, the slip of a girl is loosed
And her life folds over. Against the cold, the waiting
For the what will happen. The next. Wonderful
Awful. The blonde in a chemical bath.
The story keeps on being written
As a woman who waits for never to happen
As an empty wall waits for light to form a bridge
And under it, a mass of open eyes,
Waiting for the awful eventual. Now?
And yes is what is said. Then here it is, the box
We live in where the crazy face of the day looks back
At the closed eye of the night looking in.
A boy of four comes in as an example
Of where the door of life is left open for a moment.
Time tumbles hour after hour until it’s morning again.
Some glass is for looking through, some is for seeing back.
Every outline is a cage one way or another.

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