Learned

p
o
e
m
s

My brain is a baby.

And all the ancients are in it still.

 

My heart is a brain

emptied of them.

 

 

Both brain and heart need oxygen,

one more extremely than the other.

 

My fourth infant was an orphan who lived between my ears.

 

Its cries could only be heard

when it echoed around the pump.

How it hurt!

 

Another infant lived like an octopus fully exposed

with a skull like a bottle cap inside its thought.

 

It was my arms.

 

 

A heart is a brain that is only trying

to think without any defense.

 

The tentacle is a brain too.

 

And its adaptable jelly’s

just as intelligent as human blood.

Sometimes you look into a baby’s eyes.

 

 

“Bless her,” you suggest to passerby

yourself being old and unnecessary.

 

But no one does.

 

Please, you cry. The tears of an infant can be bottled and

hidden

for special occasions.

 

One drop on your tongue and you won’t ask for more.

I’ve said this somewhere before.

Fanny Howe has been teaching for four decades. She manages to do this without living anywhere and liking only to be in bed.

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