Friday, September 27, 2013

For my sister who asked me to write a poem


What is hubris?

I used to think all hubris came from jealousy.

Scientists, like literary critics, make toxic chemicals.

Words.

A play on words.

Words are prettier than bodies.

Words do not wilt with age.

Words don’t have hormones. Not as far as I know.

Words don’t get cancer.

Words are not impacted by superfund sites.  Not directly.

Do words get sick from Strontium 90 and Roundup Ready?

Do words create naval dumping sites or aquifers?

Do words make 400 parts per million?

What happened to the bees?

Will words bear children when exposed to secret fracking chemicals?

Who will be the last baby?

Who will have the last word?


There is something about car dealerships. Today I bought a black Prius
because I haven't seen a butterfly lately.
Sandy and guns. Oh that too.
The saleswoman told me I should work less and feel less stress.
She said I would make myself sick.
Remain calm. Eat your vegetables.  Go to yoga class.
These are things we say while test driving a new car.
Then she told me she had cervical cancer and they took everything out and this week they found more cancer cells even though there was nothing left inside.
How can you do a pap smear when there is no cervix she asked her doctor.
The lady's eyes were deep brown.
I hugged the lady who sells cars.
I want to hug every body.
I told her there are over 100 superfund sites on Long Island.
She asked, 'what’s a superfund site?'

How do I begin to explain my frustration with words and persistent organic pollutants?

Where is eden?  Please text me the location and I will use my GPS to find my way there.

What is the butterfly effect?

Is it possible to restore words and living things to their rightful places?

Have you found your one rightful place?

Echoing the famous words of a famous poet this poem (if you can call it that)
exhibits hubris.


4 comments:

alice slater said...

Very moving. Says so much with so few words. Sends a dagger through my heart!

Daisy Ray said...

I really like this poem, Heidi. Have you sent it anywhere else?

Daisy Ray said...

I really like this poem, Heidi. If you haven't sent it out somewhere, you should!

Daisy Ray said...

You look just like your mom....