G-d is Spying on Mankind
No matter how well-dressed you are, you will not know the contents of a book
by balancing it on your head. Nor will trepanning your skull
allow the wind to carry the knowledge of scattered pages and burning Bibles
into any part of your brain that will recognize the ash as words.
In the shadows of derelict trains, four old men sit around a table in pews
rescued from abandoned churches. They, too, have tried
balancing books on their heads for the delight of passersby, tried
learning open-heart surgery and dentistry from medical encyclopedias
bought at library close-out sales, but perfection eludes
even them and their attempts. The suits you wear have to be new.
God can tell if you bought them at a thrift store, or pulled them
from the fresh bodies of a recently-dead suicide victim or career alcoholic.
If there’s anything I’ve learned about Heaven,
you have to bathe an awful lot to get in.
Open Plains Cut By Highways
Caterpillars and bridges
rise and fall like waves, there is
road that starts at the point that
the bottom step ends, where
your tiny bare feet stumble on
the gravel path, determined
to run away from me even
now. The wind lifts the hem
of my cotton dress, hold
it down at the edge here
and here, with one tiny
hand that will someday too near turn
into an adult hand,
in these moments when tomorrow
and yesterday and nothing
all matter equally,
so long as there are bridges
and roads that run forever.
Day has taught writing classes at the Loft Literary Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota, since 2000. Her poetry has recently appeared in Big Muddy, The Cape Rock, New Ohio Review, and Gargoyle, and her published books include Walking Twin Cities, Music Theory for Dummies, Ugly Girl, and The Yellow Dot of a Daisy. She has been a featured presenter at Write On, Door County (WI), North Coast Redwoods Writers’ Conference (CA), and the Spirit Lake Poetry Series (MN). Her newest poetry collections, A Perfect Day for Semaphore (Finishing Line Press) and I’m in a Place Where Reason Went Missing (Main Street Rag Publishing Co.) will be out late 2018.