an artist friend once told me
that clothes are merely a distraction
from the human body.
we agreed that the dream
would be to shut all the blinds,
let your clothes fall to your feet.
select a cd from your shelf,
(naked) place it carefully on the disk turner,
(naked) sauté vegetables, sit on the couch
& flip through magazines (naked)
& when the night darkened,
to lower your tender, naked body
into the sea that is your bathtub,
water alive against your skin, hair dripping,
that night, i had a dream that all the frogs died & all our forests & grass were replaced with artificial turf & silken leaves that didn’t need watering. with all the extra time we had on our hands, we poured over & ordered things that arrived in packages stacked high on our doorsteps until we were drowning in polyurethane purses of lurid pink, microchips embalmed in metal, false eyelashes glazed in glitter the color of cheeto dust, devices that measured our walk our heartbeat our eyebrow twitches. everywhere we looked there were clothes upon clothes upon clothes & the hollow all we’d eat.
Jenny J. Chen is a writer based in New Haven, Connecticut, with words in The Atlantic, NPR, Washington Post, Guernica, and others.