In this cicada city, we are dead,
We are quiet, we are home.
Here, you belong
To me. I, to you. The trees lurch
Toward later summer, reach
Toward the window
Where glass makes a mirror
Of the sitting. Lightning forks.
All directions lead to my empty head
Bent over a box of cicatrix ash.
My mothering lips are stitched
Shut by sorrow.
What was once a mind
Is pried open.
Look, doctor, at the tangle
Where the pearl should be.
And then, distraction —
The pink Mobius Strip dips down
And begins its torturous twist.
The current catches
The tree and drags me forward
Toward some mute missing beginning.
-Mary Jo Bang