A Meditation on A Meditation of Frost
by Emily Kendal Frey
Emily Kendal Frey grew up in Seattle and lives in Jamaica Plain, MA. Recent work appears or is forthcoming in Washington Square Review, New York Quarterly, DIAGRAM, Sawbuck, Word For/ Word, Unpleasant Event Schedule, Coconut, and RealPoetik.
A Meditation on A Meditation of Frost
1 Affection is a dumb dog. Whoever said that didnt own me, was not my master. 2 Because you are unkind to me, you have become less beautiful. 3 Today is the anniversary of every other day. Insofar as no one knows anything new about love. 4 ... because I forgot how soft... I heard you say as you turned me over like a split white fish, ribs flapping. The other half of the sentence lost inside your other manuscript. 5 Time stops for no one OR as the plaque outside the now closed Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary School reads, We shall overcome 6 If you were alone on a desert island and could only... Most questions are intended to distract us from their answers. 7 Scientists are now harvesting seeds to save for when the world goes dry. No one will eat when were stuck to the sides of canyons, rinsing our hair in debris. 8 Id bring a book on birds... or a bird. ... maybe a piece of old-fashioned silence. 9 Everybody has their own thing that they yell into a well about 10 A play is only the set of actors available that day. 11 Elves, backyard pit barbeque, lilacs, termites in the backseat: the sum of it makes a person want to: lemons, lemons, lemons. 12 Death makes several preliminary announcements: I see you. Youre next. 13 Good advice is misused almost as often as Q-tips: youve got a grip but you cant get at the hot orange mess. 14 Death, my best and most insincere opponent. Im ready for you this time with fists of sand. 15 Someone in the office drinks too much. Antiseptic, booze, metallic spearmint tinge, I follow it from break room to cubicle. That was me in my 20sup all night, fucking fucking fucking. 16 Look. Its the great wide whale of heartache, beached. You dont know the size of a thing until it dries up in front of you. What eyes! 17 Believe me, ________ will only hinder development slightly. The doctor and her mother dont see this as problematic. As she methodically eats everything in the candy bowl. 18 Expectation is a persons belief in a prevailing order. Even a dog has an ego. A crack addicts dog is most likely smarter than you. Judge and be judged. 19 Light, the only living proof of salvation. Bare bulb, hanging. Slashes across your photograph. 20 The BIG clue is the first dabble in desire. If you had to sneak it and if you keep sneaking. Love, you know, isnt a secret. Its the bam bam catastrophe. Here I come, with confetti. Just try and knock me from this moving float. 21 Horror is self- referential. Choose Halloween costumes that bore you shitless. 22 After the funeral his mother and father stood, swaying, in front of the crowd, turquoise beads pinching her throat. They were temporarily reconciled. My own mother, next to me, weeping for God knows what. 23 Cowardice is shaped like an axe. My axe-shaped bed. 24 Because they seemed to have what you wanted (jean jackets, porches, un- complicated lives), you trembled, flushed and moist in their presence, the muscles of your neck straining like earthworms across a very dry sidewalk. 25 Sure, you can get away with all kinds of lies and fabrications, some even worthy at the time. Then you die in the big wooden chest of glory alone. 26 Pelagic is a word that means occurring in the open sea. This will mean nothing to you unless you live underwater with birds. Ive been waiting for the tiny dot of your boat on the horizon. An act of magic. 27 Take me down lightly. I do not think it goes all the way. 28 Hello, big black shiny deep understudy of the hole Im going to be if I cant live up to my current non-potential. Stay back! Im getting good at faking failure. 29 A river makes many entrances in and out of a city. Were being made love to, dont you see? Bend over that bench.