the rivers of it, abridged

New York City skyline at night




Raleigh Thompson


Be careful of everybody —
I notice an iguana
Coming out of a hole
To the left,
Just when you have reclaimed
Your dignity,
And there are some
Graceful tarantulas
Approaching from the rear
As you make your
Diary entry,
"I have never felt
So fulfilled
In my life."
I think I will say to you,
"Be careful of everybody."
I have strong coffee
In the morning
And end up staring
At the back
Of the milk carton,
Where little toothless faces
Are displayed by
The National Child Safety Council
And I am told
How safe and lucky I am
To be surrounded by milk.
In this kitchen
I can hear
A clock chime
And the cat
Lick itself like sugar.
Why should I feel
There is an impending
Tragedy here,
Or that anyone at all
Has watched too many
Hitchcock movies?



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