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October 19, 2015 by RJ


Simple Variations

I was a nose
and two eyes and a mouth
I was a gender
and a race and a class

I was a language
and a code and a system
a culture and a mass
and a movement

Once, but only once,
I thought was a cult, then
thought I was magic, had
something like destiny,
a bubblegum word at best

Now I am just a voice
trailing off, not liking the
sound of itself recorded.



Kid stuff, the revving engine
in the drive way. I love to take
out the car. The car never
gets taken out.

I was the kind of kid
who made mad car noises,
rocking in his seat.
No I wasn’t.

It’s always raining or about
to rain. It’s always damp
or cloudy. Or I’m just not up
to it. I’m not sure how the
gearshift works anymore.

The car has won awards, but
I never have. Maybe it’s envy.
The car’s red, not green, so
the envy must be in me.

Maybe one day I will grow up.
Or maybe I will finally
take the car out again.



You cannot see the bottom,
neither can I. Should we dive
is the question. I’ve got all
kinds of questions.

I never know the answers or
feel like I have an answer
until I hear someone else speak
more questions. Should we
dive is still the question.

There’s a leaf floating, a sense
of a bottom, or maybe there isn’t.
Maybe this tiny pool takes us
through the center of a quicksand
universe. There’s no pushing
through to the other side.
It’s not possible.

I have no choice but to dive.




JD DeHart is a writer and teacher. He has recently been nominated for Best of the Net, and his chapbook, The Truth About Snails, is available on Amazon.

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