Your Head Is A Good Place For Your Eyes

Every time I write a crooked slice
of my funny sideways life,
I end up flopped on the couch
with all the pink
sucked out of my tender middle. 
Maybe that’s how you feel
sometimes
after bouts with the reality
that blood remembers gravity
the more it flows. 
We tire easily as we go. 

So why should our heads
perch so far from our feet? 
Though our brains ride astride
our mouths (on good days),
our respiration
must be fussed over by organs
that might as well be on the moon. 
Through the lungs, the heart,
and down the line–
flushed through miles of old pipes–
the oxygen falls into our slippers,
only to bother our gout. 

The birthday candles glow bright
as our heads grow light. 
There’s barely blood to wake our noses
to smell the burning wicks and
decide the lilies in the vase are real. 
That’s how some days seem to me,
though younger than you.
But I digress.
And you can still tell:

the lilies came from a friend’s garden. 
You smell vanilla in the cake.
The milk is fresh;
the blanket soft. 
More is right and young than wrong. 
Your head is stuck where it is because
it’s a good place for your eyes,
which over the window sill
see beauty your slippered feet
might barely feel.

Birds do better than murmur
in the Oklahoma sun,
which rises old but warm.
All the senses can be painted
from your chair,
whether you lift a brush or not.
You do.
So, without regret shall I.



For my friend, Jo Ann Duck Teter




Oct. 28, 2013

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