I remember looking into the gash
Something sharp in the trash had cut in my palm
When I pushed the bag down into the tight barrel.
That squiggly stuff in the soft tissue
Between forefinger and thumb, I thought
Was life, until I turned over the largest stone
I could tumble in the back yard. All those
White grubs and pressed, naked earth reminded
Me of the stuff inside my hand. Where
Was life hiding ? My tenth grade
Biology teacher had started it, making us
Look at life, which I translated as for life.
My little camera caught dead things close up,
As if life leaked out like air from a lost balloon.
I watched cats and dogs. Their teeth and tongues
Spoke of life, unlike the gibberish of people.
I agreed to go to church the next Sunday, in case
Life hid there. I hadn’t been, for long sermons
Of time. No dice, just light bouncing
From the money Sis and I tried to count.
Then, I thought I had found it in you, in you
And your wet groin. The musk of hair,
Fluid and mild bacteria. Why wouldn’t life
Be where life begins. We made a fun soup
That stuck to our hands. We grinned.
When I walked you home, you said,
‘Tomorrow, we dissect pigs.’