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Monday, February 8, 2016

This is Not a Love Poem (V)


Boxed in Lovers (They Seem so Happy)


1) The quantity of nerve cells in the brain is in direct relation to need.

The sea nettle jellyfish spends
little on the purchase of nerve cells for his brain.
He is bell shaped and bold beauty
lace of tentacles
exquisite in their ability to scoop
passive prey.


2) To hunt active prey you need more nerve cells for your brain.

Consider the flatworm,
following sunlight, humidity,
the warmth of leaves.
His brain weighs data
which triggers the oozing of juice
onto the hapless earthworm,
who is dissolved and consumed.

3) Social animals have larger brains.
Two weeks before death
a honeybee is set free
from currying combs, setting wax.
Now a forager
he fluffs food from purple coneflowers
reads the sundial
times the flower
for nectar signals
and takes note
in a flower diary.
Returns at the precise moment
the petals open for penetration.

4) Survival depends on our ability to learn.

My last boyfriend painted large canvasses.
He’d come to bed smelling
of linseed oil
and turpentine.
Once he’d aroused me
he’d return to his paints.
In the henna of daybreak
I’d consider my naked form,
full moon breasts, burnt sienna hair
thick with the wet oil of color.
One day
I noticed the hair in a painting
was red, yellow, cerulean,
the eyes chartreuse, with teacup breasts,
not like mine.

5) To kill a scorpion you crack its husk. Once you figure this out, you’ve mastered the technique for life.

© Maria Garcia Teutsch
originally published in The Café Review

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