LEORA FRIDMAN


WHEN MEDICINE TASTES LIKE AIRCRAFT

We all need a little break. We all need a little
jolt sometimes, and the way that rocket ship

undid me was not about metal or gas- powered weight.
If lead wasn’t poison I’d munch any erosion I could get.

I’d like to feel that coming apart inside me.
I’d like to feel the spaceship’s parts.

Not in a sexy way, you know, just it would help us all
to start moving into modernity. Learn what it’s like to trade in ions,

give a little ground tooth up for our country, in war or in peace.
I shuffle up next to them for faith. Without iron wings or plastic doorways,

I’m an unwise, limitless beast. Metal doesn’t expand me,
doesn’t twirl dizzying tassels from its core

like a male stripper, doesn’t rotate its center like organic forms do.
I like how it creaks at me. I like being bewildered by too many

strong planes, too many audible bits. It’s the role my body can cave for.
It’s the nook where I can sink. I’d give my left arm to be a banker

on the next Space Probe. I’ve a feeling I’d be no good with folks then.
I would have hurt so many with my trades. They’d have a destiny for me.

They’d know exactly what to do
with my compound.
 
 
 
 
FOR DEAN YOUNG

A heart is the board game you look
to when you run out of patience
with Pictionary. It’s not symbolic.

It could be Candy Land.
It could be anything with those
forward and back moves,

the dice that makes it seem like
you’re gaining on a champion
when you are waiting

for directions again,
when the game is
not really moving

because someone has
three bright red hotels
in his sleeve.

When you get to the end
of the colored square pattern
some kid gets pissed and flips

the board. I’m all for living
on the edge of convention,
but someone’s got to keep writing

instruction manuals so we
know where to start. Someone
has to keep beating

the drum for the printing press,
someone’s got to be bread-

baking from scratch.
Antiquated modes of
making are the board

games of believers. Always grabbing up
old machines for assets, trusting
someone will need property, cardstock,

something from your knowable heart.
Maybe not charging at a high clip
forward to Gumdrop Mountain

but collecting the biggest
pumping organs
for tune-up and faith.
 
 
 
 



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