V  P  R

Contemporary Poetry and Poetics




Up late in bed, we're symmetric shoulder-to-shoulder,
blanket-clad, watching the Travel channel,
the world's greatest architectural achievements:
Easter Island, 890 stone statuettes with faces carved
fierce, coral eyes, stout stances and pursed mouths.

We lay like statues entranced on the altar of our bed
until commercials, weight shifting, bodies fitting
into place—the construction of how we'll sleep
is a documentary on comfort, the familiar
leg over mine from behind, the settling movements

and last-minute adjustments before the program
resumes.  The statues are grouped in small clans,
spaced equidistant from each other (could lack of proximity
yield those tight lips?), but the tomb they protect
is its own engineering feat.  The archaeologists

lower a camera into a hole too small for climbing:
clay pots, jade stones, twin doors, and wall paintings,
the inner fortunes so well-guarded, now revealed again,
a cache boasting its own history, this over-looked edifice
that someone made, deemed precious, hid from view.


© by Stacia Fleegal


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