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Poetry: Heather Sommer

I catalog significant life events and mistakes
according to the Dewey Decimal System.
We fall into
         095 Books notable for bindings
         157 Emotions (no longer used)
         188 Stoic philosophy
         399 Customs of war and diplomacy
         708 Galleries, museums, private collections

& 538 Magnetism
         I use polysyllabic words when drunk.
         The longer the word, the more I think I’m flirting.

& 165 Fallacies and sources of error
         In a month you’ll forget me.
          (I said that a month ago.)
         I’ll believe this every month forever
         because it’s hard to forget being forgotten
         and you never want to be surprised by it.

& 419 Verbal languages not spoken or written
         Whenever I’m on a lake,
         I imagine the waves bring me a corpse:
         always of a young woman,
         beautifully preserved—
         not love letters in bottles
         or treasure maps or starfishes.
         She summons an armada of bodies,
         all awaiting discovery—
         the gentle lapping of the water
         like a child tugging at his mother’s blouse,
                                               I’m here, I’m here.

& 748 Glass
My greatest fear is drowning.

 

 

All rights reserved to Heather Sommer.

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