Brooke Matson Electron Cloud

You tell me of an invisible planetary system in which electrons gravitate around a nucleus. You explain this world to me with an image. I realize that you have been reduced to poetry.—Albert Camus, 1955

You could be anywhere—

after all, the hummingbird’s wings
flutter so fast only
________________a flute of emerald

hovers among the trumpet vines
Even the waspish leaves
______like tuning forks

All matter orbits what it adores


Think of the blades of a fan—
how they cease
to be blades

and where they escaped

a ring


Your palm presses

between my breasts as I unbend

from sleep___my blood

begs like ravens
but the bedroom I wake to is empty—

filled with light but the point is

you were here__you
could be anywhere


Some days I pause by the rotary phone
to spin the letters of your name

winding back time
in the hum and clack

of the wheel—reeling you in

___________by letter
Never mind

that it’s not plugged in
but I swear to god some days

______I hear a crackling on the other end

like the time you called from the hospital
still unable to speak
after surgery

I stood barefoot on the linoleum
listening to you breathe

even then

_____________I believed

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