Ask… — A Poem

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“Nightstand” — C.Birde, 4/20

 

Ask

something concrete…

What books I’ve accumulated,

over the past five weeks –

eight, thus far:

three new; five used;

two classics;

one not yet received.

(Ask

for an illustrative

Venn Diagram.)

Ask

if the stack on the nightstand

leans –

those Dead Girls & Cousins

& Innkeepers & Unicorns;

the modern-day Persephone;

the House of Tremontaine

& Castle Gormenghast

all listing crookedly,

patiently,

waiting for Wintering.

Ask

how much I read –

two paragraphs each night,

maybe three

(the stack could last indefinitely);

a comfort of words,

in self-prescribed doses.

Ask

the tangible, the specific;

I’ll answer eagerly,

each query a forbidden fruit –

tart, acidic, honey-sweet.

But please –

oh, please –

avoid the vague,

the nebulous,

the hazy;

do not disrupt

this tenuous balance;

do not ask me

how I

am.

 

— C.Birde, 4/20