The continents once formed part of a
single land mass called "Pangaea."
You pumped that liquid sand into
yourself and sank
those hold-downs. They were
to keep the empty house from thinking
it had other things to do, some
October day in earthquake weather.
The major posts are bolted
to the foundation, the subfloor
with strategic hardware, the water
against the wall. Five years
the house has settled in itself
like an old woman shifting her huge
in an armchair. Still and
you lie awake and think how many
the walls might jump their tracks,
the quiet earth
beneath your feet become a river.
Late at night
you take the house apart a thousand
and nail it back together, listening
to the timbers
wheeze and snore. You know
you cannot listen hard enough to
what most wants hearing: that distant
high-pitched singing in the aquifer.
glissade of breaking glass.
© by Rachel Loden