Margaret Ray: Premature

A skeletal umbrella that opens automatically
at the slightest touch. 
                                         My waiting, wrapped
around me. 
                      Flashlight shone
through a bat’s outstretched wing. 
                                            It’s hard to tell
from here.  That hospital smell, sickly-sweet
and biting. 
No, the fluorescent lights are all
broken in the mind. 
                     Haven’t you somewhere else
to be? 
             Look over there, something green
and blooming, this deep in November.

No, whatever tethers us to this world,
that’s                           where we worship. 

Bend to gravity,
kneel before these incubator wires. 

                Let me explain: I will stay,
propped up in a waiting room chair
until I realize I should offer to go let her dog out. 

                      He sulks by her bed, or
on top of the shoes.  I keep thinking I hear her,
calling me. 

How often do your ears invent your name?

When I finally clip his leash to his collar,
he hops with joy.  He has waited so long.


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