DO NOT DISTURB
You are noisy/ even when you are silent, / the world is dripping with/ Do Not Disturb signs in/ languages we don’t even/ recognize as languages. --- From “On Eggshells” by Hannah Stephenson, The Storialist, 01-03-12
It is easy enough to hear silence
at the edge of the woods. It is loud.
Your pounding heart is not there
beating sense into your dulled mind.
They just jump out like shadows
on walls, turn their backs, ignore us.
On its own, one whines with longings
struggling to spill out, uncorked,
from unguarded gaols of feelings
that have lain fallow, rotten carrion
of desire tardily unbound, love gone
still, a truant finally nailed dead
on broken beds creaking under cold
sheets that will never find heat again.
The other, a slug of a mind, stays mute,
until it is egged on to scream out a pain
in its pure form: a memory of loss,
a raw betrayal of troth. Cut, cut clean.
Out of the woods, on his way home,
it was easy to read on the locked cottage
door an absent sign: Do not disturb.
Silence has its sharp language. It is clear.
--- Albert B. Casuga