Loneliness makes me pliable.         My voice's imperceptible
shift from un- to sure,           it's water
run down a maple tree's moss.          Drunk

on punches too rummy to toss        the baby
with the bath.           I'd stick the tail
on the path at hand,         the matter

lost in a milky wash.            Oxycontin
flushed the face and mind
plumb raw with forgetting's friction.     Fire

sale down at the party store!          Plastic
tchotchkes for a Friday.            Save the date
from a night with me.          Hovering nightly right

at knowing some new something to say
about the weather, the time.            Is there
time to split a hair's yolk

to the matter's heart's marrow-
bone?              Or the calcium weave
of a shell's crack crying the dropped

stitch blues?              Palpable intangibility claws
at the kitchen door.             Some sweet treat
pours black smoke from the stove.

Let me tell you a story.


Ross Robbins is a poet and painter based in Portland, Oregon. Recently, he has been painting lots of triangles and visiting the otters at the zoo. His full-length debut, THE THREE EPs, is available now from Two Plum Press.

Darla Mottram