A moth flies out of my ear.
I’ve left the porch light in my head
on again. I’m always waiting for someone
to come home to me. Consider the flight plan
of a moth: “I’m going to flit up and up and up
and left and down, then nibble on a coat, then land
on a three hundred-million-year-old rock
and be eaten by a cat.” I dream of unity,
not certainty. Of being kissed by whatever made me
need to ask the stars if they wish upon themselves,
if I can borrow a cup of light years,
if sorrow’s why the universe is expanding
or joy. You and your cane, you and your suicide note,
you and your needle and booze and kleptomania
are a package deal according to the sales brochure.
Same for me. I dream that the constant rumbling of atoms
doing their jigs allows one conclusion: matter is happy.
Or at least active. Or my shadow has a face
that it only shows the ground. I need two hands
to hold everything and two more to hold everything
I drop. Come home, whoever you are. I have cocoa
somewhere, and this is a house haunted
by old songs and rose petals that were left
where they fell. I don’t even dust
the dust that has fallen on the dust of me.
Sure the place is a mess, but a home is also
a biography. Just ask the sun.
BOB HICOK’s tenth collection is Red Rover Red Rover (Copper Canyon, 2021). He’s a two-time finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award, recipient of the Bobbitt Prize from the Library of Congress, and a Guggenheim and two-time NEA Fellow.