Chani Zwibel is the author of Cave Dreams to Star Portals. She is an associate editor with Madness Muse Press. She is a graduate of Agnes Scott College, who was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, but now dwells in Marietta, Georgia, with her husband and their dog. She enjoys writing poetry after nature walks and daydreaming.
WHAT GETS LOST
Lost Atlantis leans in rubble, pillars broken, tombs, and wreckage.
Weary mermaids lay their brows on marble remnants.
Oysters encase skulls in pearl.
Pokémon play cards with children.
Baseball stadiums serve beer.
Wizards battle indiscretions, passing cars through red lights screeching.
All the debts have been forgiven, except student loans are due.
Primeval forests cut for timber give their life’s blood to be boards,
Stacked and laid in dining room floors,
Where the rich hold lavish parties,
Spilling wine and drinking more.
Damn the ruling class forever; never mind, see that blue sky?
Marbles tumble from her pockets, slip down anthills, race the sun.
You and I and all we know here
Caught gasping as the waters rise.
Soft Fuzzy Guinea Pig
Green Plastic Castle.
Queen Peggy of the timothy hay,
Although a furry, fluffy ball she is,
Beware of her sharp teeth.
What incisors nab the carrot
Can also nip the thumb.
It is November
and the wind sneaks
around the house like a thief.
Grey fall day full of rain and cold,
inches its way toward Thanksgiving
with no great hurry or pleasure.
No one answers their phones.
I feel I may not really exist
except in this little house,
wrapped in a warm fuzzy bathrobe
with my hair in a towel.
I want to crawl inside
this Victoria’s Secret velour
and hibernate there all winter.
I wait for the ray of golden sunshine,
but today I think all I’m getting is Netflix and coffee,
and the warm caress of the heating pad for comfort.
Eat sadness like a bag of potato chips, crunchy, salty, flat.
The sound of the crinkly bag brings the dog.
She wants to snack on some sadness, too.
See how delicious the juices of pain become?
Gently cradling the still warm
but not warm enough coffee pot,
I pour old the old from the early morning,
which I slept through
and put in clean water to make another brew.
I don’t sleep well.
I want only solace,
but night is a painful birth if you struggle.
The best ideas and the worst thoughts
always hit me just as the back of my skull
sinks wearily into the pillow.
The one time
when I am alone
with my thoughts and silence,
the husband, and the dog softly breathing
in their sleep,
warm lumps in the dark room.
The grey clouds overhead manifest
of my half-assed attempts
to curse my enemies
with lightning strike.
I drive to Wendy’s on the hunt
for the fattest burger
I can find.
In stained sweat pants and dirty tee-shirt,
hair matted and frizzed,
I looked upon the world bleakly,
my “depression scowl”.
The beer at home washes
down the greasy cheese and fries
while watching “The Crow” and laughing,
nothing like the nostalgia
of electric tape and goth makeup of the late 1990’s,
a golden age I never realized was glittering.
Destiny waits outside,
beyond the begonias.
I understand intellectually
the importance of self-care,
brushing hair and shaving legs,
applying mustard rub to a congested chest,
and afterward the band aids
on the cuts where the razor slipped,
antibacterial ointment and another band aid
on the blister where the fancy shoe
(albeit sensible flats) rubbed,
but I have not been careful with myself lately;
bruised my hand opening the patio umbrella,
dropped my phone and put a crack in the screen,
I have strange thoughts:
Hundreds of rusty razor blades
hiding in piles behind the bathroom mirrors
of these old houses,
dropped through the slit
and dumped into the wall,
forgotten, shaved many a stubbly face
on a 50’s husband, trying to look his sharpest.
And now I leave hundreds of cotton balls
soaked in rubbing alcohol
and what foundation I used them to remove.
We all have wastes and wastelands.
The Spirit of Autumn
takes down leaves
and Autumn leaves
She leaves us
The Spirit of Autumn
Dresses herself in
Grey and mushroom spore
Hear the trees disrobing
Slip after silk slip
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