Veils: A Room, A Door, a Light in the Upstairs Hall,
After a painting by Robert Rhodes
Every evening, shadows lay their veils
over the familiar and the movie starts.
I pass my hand through the projector’s dusty beam,
watch it weave a stream of motes into another world.
I hardly need to leave my room to see
the moon, perfectly composed
behind a screen of branches, transmute
the purple half-light from an open window,
playing for hours on the bedroom wall.
In the sealed white fridge, inviolate,
I thought but
I was wrong, potions
brewed all by themselves, forgotten
leftovers harboring a culture
various in scent and hue
as any garden. In the plastic
cube, a slimy orange
on last week’s stew.
A purple sludge escapes
the confines of its
And here, egg yolks
sprouting white tendrils, a smell
so pungent it could be a sound.
Potatoes ossifying in a covered
dish, moss green as rocks
half covered in the creek
I wandered as a child.
I know if I could study
my own skin and gut, I’d
find a population
many times as various,
Willingly or not,
we share this space.