And All Around, the Withered

And All Around, the Withered

I total the numbers printed
on passing boxcars,

multiply by seven, then add two,
subtracting every third odd number,

only to find, in the end, myself
tethered to this empty platform,

spelling hapless with integers,
acknowledging Zahlen and

the infinite. Sometimes gravel, too,
calls to me and I observe space

in the path’s patterns, constellation
stacked upon constellation,

multi-dimensional galaxies
expanding in one swooping arc,

heroic eagles and exploding stars
complicit in their deeds and forever

locked in sequence, yet when I explain
my vision, the words emerge

as convex polyhedrons or inverted,
drooled gasps, and people turn aside.

That boy’s two bricks shy a full load, they
say. The lights are on but nobody’s home.

“And All Around, the Withered” was published in Steel Toe Review in January 2017.

12 thoughts on “And All Around, the Withered

  1. That boy’s got capacity for ample curiosity and observations and connections – something those fully loaded with conventional norms have minimal capacity for – even if they wanted to take some on.
    My mindful photography training expanded appreciation for patterns in all sorts of things – yes, in gravel! Light and shadow and texture and hue and …. oh yes, wonderful images!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The world is definitely more complex than at first glance- I think that’s why children see so much magic in their surroundings. When I got older I had stuff to do so that was kind of lost. But it’s still there, I just need a little reminder every now and again haha. I liked it a lot man

    Liked by 2 people

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