Construction Literary Magazine

Fall 2020

Highly Simplified Cross-Section of the Nervous System

Highly Simplified Cross-Section of the Nervous System
Photograph via Flickr by petrOlly

—Out of the circuits, a radio scatters its roll calls
of impossible multiples. We have learned
to expect savagery tomorrow,
today. Who is delayed
in which nation and who’s on which side
of which violence. All those itemized patterns curled
into us. Our planet was once leaf-lipped and rightly
moist or arid. It fit us. Pollinators lapped
at the pansies. We could believe in small
things that circle, but now all the news
consists of one sentence. My love stays up the night,
reminding his eyes of the tender death
of the future. I find him
at dawn on the sofa, his mouth unassembled. We have moved
into the next sodden winter. All day, I type, type, afraid
this is my very last palm
of intense concentration. Each mark fills a sequence
of hours. But dark falls and I’m persuaded to agitate
to the peril of passages, the concrete reality
of the Guatamalan girl whose little voice
pealed in the particular enlargement of systems. You can’t lie
to me. I hear it, the rhapsody of our failure.
                                  The distance. Who lives there. Today
someone tells of Felipe held
in Border Patrol for a week. Felipe was 8. This time of year
the ground is
so cold. The face of the sky hangs with gray. December’s wind again
with its hinges. If a child has no safe corridor. If no
whereabouts for their heartbeats. If a country
will not necessary. If born here. Or not. So many
take the path and the path is alone. What if we are only
cowardly, what if tomorrow
has no other means but goodbye?