I was put in cold storage. Immediately, I slept
For seven years. During that time, the Great Mists
Came and receded, as if trying to prove that weather
Never lasts. Still, I was frozen. My reflection in the toaster
Floated around in my head like I was seeing stars.
My lips were the color of childhood dreams
Standing under the moon in snow pants, feet frozen
In frying pans about to ski down an endless gorge.
I knew a thing or three, but the best wisdom
Is the kind you take daily, like the weather report.
If you fall down a hill you must fall up another;
The sea is not level. An empty bag left to its own
Devices will always linger near a door or a flue.
You should have seen the smoke when I was released.
I was strapped to a dolly, a block of ice wearing a derby hat.
My limbs would not move; my eyes were fixed.
It was a nice summer day, the kind you mean
To remember forever but never do.
Some boys threw rocks at me; cars drove by –
I could hear the gears moving around in the transmissions.
I could hear the hands cranking the wheels,
The feet mashing what must have been pedals,
But could have been gavels or even gophers
Who refused to stay in their holes.
I began to throw away my walker – I can walk!
I had an invisible friend to hold my arm, but still
Those first steps were each a miracle.
Life was good, as good as it gets. The funeral parlor
Was always blossoming, the grocery store ripe
With apples and mangos. I take a bite, the only way
A free man knows how: with his spare tooth
That the tooth fairy just then bought for a million dollars
In immature bonds which promised to pay some day
Not too soon, and not too far into the unknown, I’ll bet.