Daily Archives: April 11, 2022

Windows Are Open, Who Is Home

A wailing child somewhere
in the neighborhood. How powerful
that sound becomes when it goes on 
for such a long time.

You would think by now
I’d be immune to the slight panic
it induces, it happens so often.
It’s the kid next door, one house

down the hill from my own. Weather’s
been warm enough these days
that with windows open,
what’s been inside all winter is leaking out.

With my windows open as well?
I wonder if I’ve spread any panic
in the neighborhood with my own 
noisy pain? Even a twinge of nervousness

out there might be validating if I knew of it.
When I look out on the street I can’t see
anyone looking back, cocking one ear to
any sound — even the baby’s gone silent.

Before They Snap Shut

We are all exhausted
from avoiding 
teeth. Teeth in how
we live, how we watch
for death. The car stalls
at the intersection, 
teeth loom on both sides.
The bills sever us from
a sense of security the way teeth
tear into flesh. Stained teeth glimpsed
behind apparently sweet lips
warn of duplicity. How we fear 
being bitten, how everything 
appears suspiciously vampiric
in this dimming light.