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Desire
Brent Newsom (bio)

It arrives on your doorstep
swaddled like an orphan.
You glance around, check
the mailbox for a note. Nothing.
You feed it. It grows, begins
to walk, helps itself
to the olives in the fridge,
sucking out the pimentos
and spitting them on the counter.
Before long, it’s lounging
in its underwear, scratching itself,
telling you, I’m hungry,
make me a sandwich.
Tuna, no crust.

Or you starve it,
shut it in a coat closet
for weeks under a heap
of forgotten shoes, turn the TV up
till its crying stops and you kill
the noise, soak in the silence,
believe things are back
the way they were.
But when everything’s still
and you lie awake in bed,
it whooshes about the house
singing your name
in the thin, bright tones
of a castrato.

 

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