Three poems from LUNCH: A Primer in Poems Stashed (in my daughter’s lunchbox her last year before going away to college)



Telescoping from your cervical spine
in a barbed coatrack.

Frequency in your fingers,
depths of your clearie eyes,

you develop a signal
to your satellite self.

Wiseness is recognizing pattern.
Repeating waves of sound, light

reflect an inner tower.
You learn to detect the jerk

of dishonesty, the disingenuous,
the velocity of a lie.



One side of it
a screaming,
teeth at your neck,
swing of the hammerblow,
blunting the soft
bolster of the body,
spine trilling,
marimba wood
malleted fiercely.

The other a flickering
tongue-lick flame,
melting coins of butter
in your belly-button.
You will be candlewicked
by two fingers
and spit.



You give yourself room,
susceptible to plushness, very fine hairs.
You're not wrong, not right,
benign as a window, cool, glass pane,
relishing flatness, passivity.

You sit bowl, slurp yourself,
a satiation of hunger, thirst, peace.
You might hold a teacup, fingering
the glaze of it between your blessings.

Free from the ricochet of other people,
bothersome mouth-breathing,
exactingness of places. Your spleen,
or other inexplicable organ,
happiest when left alone.

© Tori Grant Welhouse