Sunday, August 1, 2010

Poem of the Week #135

Poem from the Left

The poem I wrote with my left hand
was not what I expected it to be.
It was not covered in hairy warts
or festering boils. It did not howl
at the moon.

The poem I wrote with my left hand
surprised me because it did not smell
like old socks or fried onions.
It did not require a row of stitches.
It was not torn.

Coming as it did from the sinister side,
I thought it would be dark and smokey,
grinning at me from the corner of the room,
like a sleazy old huckster with a gold tooth
and a penchant for whiskey.

On the contrary,

The poem I wrote with my left hand
was the brightest and most weightless poem
I have ever written. It sailed off the page
with its spinnaker taut, heading for
warm waters.

Had it been a butterfly, it would have landed on
my cheek to mark my smile. Had it been a parade,
it would have handed me a baton to lead the march.
Had it been a golf ball, it would have made
a hole-in-one.

The poem I wrote with my left hand—
had it been you—would have kissed me.
It would have placed my left hand over its heart
so I could feel it pounding, calm and steady,
in my own hollow chest.

Lisa Vihos

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