Wednesday, October 26, 2022

A Fable for the Fossils’ Proving Ground

Simic, with his appetite
For the bizarre, waved at us
While on his way to the dump

The other morning, and we
Huddled and did not wave back
Because we weren’t ready yet

To be taken to the dump
With his other nongenres
Made up of fictions, essays,

And autobiographies,
Plus poetry, plus his jokes.
We were shy, half terrified.

What if someone thought we should
Try to survive on the dump
With the black shoes, black buttons,

And arithmetical flies?
We weren’t ready yet! We still
Had little bits of heart-flesh

Clinging to our spindly limbs.
We would have been torn apart
And scattered, spread as compost.

We were determined to wait
Until we were more than flensed—
Polished. Then we’d lie, content.

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