Janna Ireland, Collapse (Detail), 2018 (Artist Website, Instagram)

we find shelter in the forest tasting the metal
filling our teeth among cellular towers and abandoned
treehouses bicycles circle the trees of front lawns
stolen from us ears cleaned by the danger spoken to us

red-alert newscasts lockdown drills
prayers podcasts prescription bottles full of rabbit teeth
we are exhausted

we live here now finding caves and underground
rivers trails returning to a place where we began
something but can’t remember

was it this dream or the last
where cherry pits were fired from slingshots
and thick fruit trees grew from our heads
like antlers
where caped in the firelight we carved the child away
and placed it carefully at your doorstep
tied with deerskin and glow-in-the-dark shoelaces

movement in the leaves

it has taken years but we have made something
new

arms laced with dead wires and wildflowers
taking their first breaths in the dark

the noise
the honeybee drone
the hum of the phone against your cheek
at night
so soft you can almost sleep

in the wi-fi in the air you breathe
you can taste it
copper
violets

Lance Carpenter

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