THE LEY-LINES OF PALMISTRY
Chicago is a lie the midwest told trying to be metropolitan;
Detroit never really existed at all, I’m pretty sure. A mirage of rusted
twist-tin and iron—let me show you where I’m from, mark an “x”
over your palm; this home is built of more cartilage than cartography.
I’m told elsewhere there are mountains, but they’re hard to believe in
here where highways curve to meet horizon, this is my fertile nothing,
a gothic of small towns and flatlands. Here we inherit only
what glaciers couldn’t be bothered to sweep away,
here it’s easier to believe you can fall off the edge of the earth.
It’s always this, it’s always flesh;
flesh and blood and longing and a little bit of clay
molded into a crude approximation of what it means
to be a man and suddenly you’re an accidental god
wondering what to do with this wandering little man,
with this lost little man, with this loss—
why did you give him free will?
When you made him he was androgynous,
a loose limbed gingerbread child;
he can only break himself now.
He, the microcosm, the universe in mud-skin,
you made him too fragile for the world
he now has to stumble through—
you can’t bear to say how much you regret him.
E.B. Schnepp is a poet hailing from rural Mid-Michigan who currently finds herself stranded in the flatlands of Ohio with a bad procrasti-baking habit. Her work can also be found in Glass, Maudlin House, and Hypertrophic Lit, among others.