Allen Forrest © 2017 All Rights Reserved

The Price of Ignorance

The wild raspberries have made their way
into my garden again, their thorns tearing up my hands
when I pick tomatoes. Thereís always a price to pay
when one wants a little sweetness.
My wife, inside, hides from mosquitoes.
They donít bite me. I must taste like shit,
all those years of living a life equally charmed
and cursed. I have to stoop low to pick
the cucumbers. The ones I missed have turned
bloated and yellow. I toss them into the bushes
where chipmunks chew at their rotten cores.

Today, Iím waiting
for an important package to arrive.
I donít care whatís in it. I just like the excitement
of cutting it open with one scissor blade
and rummaging both hands into the cardboard box.
Thereís nothing like reading a mystery
with only your fingers, little feelers
sending messages directly to the brain.
Like a surgeon with both hands inside
someoneís chest, I drift off into the world
of pure feeling, forgetting everything around me.


The Exile Returns


In the dream of my death Iíve come back
to where I began,
twisted my feet around so they face
the door, squeezed out the last
of my childhood fantasies with my face
planted on the floor.


What does a bell sound like
ringing in reverse? Me,
blinder than the face
on a dollar bill, cleaning out the pantry
and filling it with empty perfume bottles.
Turn up the fire, and settle in.

The soup has always been cold.

Henry Israeli
Copyright © 2017  

Henry Israeliís poetry collections are godís breath hovering across the waters, Praying to the Black Cat, and New Messiahs. He is also the translator of three books by Albanian poet Luljeta Lleshanaku and the founder of Saturnalia Books.

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