Mucking About
Philip Quinn

Oh boy, she says, as if she was taking down something not quite of this earth.

I pull out, take a whiff, simply earth. Slightly rotting; possibilities of April growth.

She cleans up, zips up and disappears.

I smell from the touchings and insertions; my face next to this god I crave with my fingers.

This mucking about, trying to dial a phone number.

This mucking about trying to straighten up a corpse.

This mucking about.

In this room, I imagine the woman who sells me fish; complete with roots and stem
and dripping black earth that she swallows to spill down the front of her red dress.

This piece of clay. This tablet. This aspirin I stick under my tongue. I suffer the peevishness
of perfect strangers while I look around.

This mucking about, smelling of earth.

I prune roses by doing scissors with my fingers, smelling of earth and mud, and yesterday's children.