Another euphemism for death,
another polite manner of skirting
the edge of meaning.
Another dance on the delicate blade
Makes you wonder why we do this to ourselves.
Like Prufrock eating his peach, we ask,
“Do we dare to offend with a word?”
Words, being so small and weightless,
lifted from the tongue ten thousand times
easier than a feather,
more of an involuntary reflex than a
Where did we drop the spark of connotation,
for we cannot see beyond the blackened
sudden curled mass that was the floor.
Everyone has their differences, including
The couple shuffling down the street.
Walls of illumination surround them
so that it is a wonder they cannot see.
Walls of perspiring masses have clustered,
there is a building that appears to be made
out of gold where business suits make
transactions, where plans are spread across
It is clear the couple lives here, but are
averse to the living. Breathing, yet choking
on their own oxygen.
Speaking in dull rhythms, moving slowly,
and yet running away.
They are natural with their birthing,
their painful and prolonged raison d’être.
You are made for this, their mothers told them,
buying little booties and ornate trams.
Everyone can hear their screaming
from down the hall.
Where are the unkind and stubborn men
who put them in this position?
Was it lacy love, a blurry mistake,
or an action less noble?
Where are the kind doctors when the nurse
arrives with her choking ether?
They are all part of the fairy tale
until the parturition begins.
JD DeHart is the author of The Truth About Snails, a chapbook. His blog is jddehart.blogspot.com and he is a staff writer for Verse-Virtual