Sidewinder

You say I rudely cut her off, that you had to apologize,

and yet you know nothing—I

looked her in the eye,

she didn’t move, speak; I

waited, still nothing—

it seemed like she was waiting for someone, a husband?—

I have given up waiting, I’d like you to know.

 

I was near to invisible.

 

I have almost cut my tongue off.

 

May I say:  I don’t want to be entered anymore. I have no use

for it.  No pleasure.

 

Staying in the motel on the exit ramp,

cars back and forward all day, night.

Just watching, sometimes. A little more hunched.  And then

a white rabbit between the road and out building.

So dirty.

 

The weather channel says an avalanche starts with two small grains.

 

I am planning to give everyone a microphone so they can hear the invisibles.

They may be shy, sick of, happy with, the silence.

 

How can I tell you what you need to know?

 

Burrowed in sand, small,

with a rattle.  Lethal

to little creatures.  Dangerous to people:

hemotoxic venom, they call it.  Permanent

damage, it demands medical

attention.  The experts say:  Leave it

alone.

 

 

Page Hill Starzinger lives in New York City. Her first full-length poetry book, Vestigial, selected by Lynn Emanuel to win the Barrow Street Book Prize, was published in Fall 2013. Her chapbook, Unshelter, selected by Mary Jo Bang as winner of the Noemi contest, was published in 2009. Her poem, “Series #22 (white),” was chosen by Tomaz Salamun for a broadside created by The Center for Book Arts, NYC, in 2008. Her poems have appeared in Colorado Review, Fence, Kenyon Review, Pleiades, Volt, and many others. She is a Peter Taylor Fellow at the Kenyon Review Writers Workshops 2014. In 2013, Page was the Special Guest at the Frost Place Poetry Seminar.

Issue #32 February 2014
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