poetryrepairs #236 v17.04:041

JOHN GREY : Invasi0on of the Other
DAVID JAMES : Taking Stock

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Invasi0on of the Other

Iím afraid to be close. Iím scared Iíll breathe in this other instead of air. What will my lungs say when they feel ears and eyes and nose, even a lip ring? My skin is warning me. Touch and who knows what happens. Not a mingling of molecules but a complete overthrow. Every movement of my body from a blink to the rattle of a finger on a desktop is then the result of her willpower. No, I donít like this sidling up at all. My identity trembles. My mind canít tell her thoughts from my own. She wants to wrap her fingers through my quivering ten. Doesnít she have enough digits of her own? And sheís brushing cheek against cheek, working her mouth toward mine, the centerpiece of speech. How can I protest when her tongue snake-wraps around what speaks for me? She reckons itís this thing called love. It sounds fine when she explains it so why have I never heard of it? I was in the war when men were taken prisoners. And church where the priest warned of demons striking one-way bargains with the soul. I donít know enjoin, only taking over. She says she wants us to be together always. Always is it? She even wants to appropriate time.

poetryrepairs #236 v17.04:041

Taking Stock

one month into the new year and nothing is any different, any better, any worse, any clearer to me. my resolutions swirl down the drain of day-to-day life. the minute hand, falling off the face of every clock, is a sign I canít ignore. the clouds blow in and out, stringing day into night, night into rain, rain into snow, and snow into a fine sleet. the world never stops or slows down. in a flash of light, Iíll find myself on my death bed, kissing my loved ones, wondering where did the time go, what does it all mean, who, really, is to blame?

poetryrepairs #236 v17.04:041


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JOHN GREY, an Australian poet, US resident, recently published in New Plains Review, South Carolina Review, Gargoyle and Big Muddy Review with work upcoming in Louisiana Review, Cape Rock and Spoon River Poetry Review.

DAVID JAMES writes from Linden, Michigan, at Oakland Community College.