Charlie Kalogeros-Chattan

Issue #
April 26, 2020

Charlie Kalogeros-Chattan

                            That’s us—a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam—Carl Sagan

as I return to the mesa           from a pilgrimage to Prague where           the Astronomical Clock is
swaddled in scrim I am            in love with Kafka as much as             I was at nineteen an irresistible

voice that deepens my life             the thrilling discovery of his sketches            my body a conduit  
butterfly wings quickening me           down the cobblestone lanes           inside the pale of the castle

we left migrating hummers            outside the bedroom we left            flannel sheets on the bed
and finches in the backyard            and returned to nesting towhees             and quail strutting on

the fire anthills like they own             the horizon alight with             wildfires around the entire

bowl’s rim yet the birds are             trilling reborn by overflowing             well-water in their basins

I am awed by how life             can arise on a planet           as long as water is present    
the miracle of something so             complex something so unlikely           to happen and the possibility    

that given the required            exact right circumstances             anything could happen I hold
faith in Hezekiah’s            multifaceted orb            as it bobbles down the hill           my choice of one facet

leading to certain possibilities                 and then the next plane opens       to a certain more but  
given the incline no choice             can ever lead back to those            that were bypassed

this mesa is where I will            spend my days as I wrap myself            in the tick of the copper clock
time measured instead by            the sequencing of the sun            a metronomic movement

described by            winter’s grasping at warmth            followed by             the summer shunning of heat
and always           the pitfall of endeavoring          to hold the spheres still

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