We Lie on Our Backs in the Desert
Just eloped, we try to read our future
in the stars, but the sky is too big
and those fiery orbs too far.
How will we move through a world
that is so easy to fall from? How will
we hold the soles of our shoes
to the ground without slipping off
the earth’s edge? We are so
magnificently new and small
amongst Joshua Trees and rocks
and mountain hallways of the planet.
And no one knows we are here.
Over the Prairie
The sky expands towards infinity,
but I can see the glass of this marble.
Maybe it is enough to be neon
bee boxes and pumpkins, humming
as they bake in the sun.
He told me that you never find turtle corpses
because coyotes eat their turtle meat, snouts
and tongues cleaning out the hulls. Indeed,
the only turtles left in their shells are those
mashed, off guard, mid-road. I want instead
to imagine turtles burrowing into lake muck.
Perhaps, turtles, like wizened grandpas, believe
in dignity. Their wrinkled necks and noses
never want to be seen uncouth, outside
of shells. My father is neither wise nor turtle—
more like the one in the middle of the road,
belly-side up, flipped by a lumber truck, spinning
towards rear wheels, spinning in desperate circles.
He doesn’t pull in his arms, all swollen elbows and nails.
from Angelina Brooks
"I usually write cross-legged on the living room floor before grading my UNC-Charlotte students’ creative writing. I have an MFA in Creative Writing (Poetry) from McNeese State University, and sometimes what I write is good, like the poems that have been published or are forthcoming in journals including Litmosphere, Cold Mountain Review, and The Southern Indiana Review."