weather permitting

the long park wears a shadow from the overpasses
on the map the bridges could have been canals

i think water does flow through the ravines
i couldn’t say rushing

not with long squid bodied stumps
carved with short faces surrounding the drainpipes

faces of terror because the carving knife
shaped the eyes into 4 4’s
and mouths made the lake look sated

on the map these don’t exist and neither do we
but the park does look green and like a school
of minnows
you were trying to stop drinking

later that afternoon we got your prescription
a serotonin-inhibitor

that was a long walk and you said thanks
for nothing
not like you knew civilization was about to collapse

when i said loving yourself was the first act of loving
those around you in the backyard before the hike

i didn’t mean it
was actually the second like the laws of thermodynamics

that zeroth law hiding beneath
the others like someone camping under the highway crossing over us

or that a law meant more than advice
i wanted you to come home with me

the map got lost in my wallet or in my back pocket
B said he could get us back because he walked this way to work

we stopped at the creek for our toes
put the water around us but it kept moving

we couldn’t use archimedes’ principle
to calculate how hard it is for us to float

so we didn’t try 12 steps first or the first one after our feet were wet
obsessing over everything but power

who had it
who thought more about the current

how to become unmarked or at least
unlikely to take another

this was spring for all intents and purposes
you put a dandelion in my hair

put my brow under a yellow that would not spread itself

the map didn’t have street names anyway
no legend to consult a moral

no compass rose to pluck a petal from




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