Ripe Artifice

Lauren K. Carlson

I resent my aliveness in so far as it means an illusion of toward.

          As though time were a straight road. Point “a” to point “b” and

each day I walk further down the line. Road. What is point “b”

          but a drop-off, an oblivion? The time/line/road is my own, sure,

but also belongs to the globe. Now imagine the earth as a bowling

          ball rolling toward point “b,” the drop off.

I resist this framework. I feel it inaccurate.

          There are millions of pinheads. My life: a force which presses against

the pins, and so the artifice, the fabric comprised of many points,

          takes on a topography. This topography is shaped through increments called days.

The days form a life. The days then, when we sense them, do not

          march us forward toward oblivion. No. They take shape.

This is what I mean by life. A topography, formed. This, which is taking shape.

Yes. And each of us who live shape it.

          Yes. And life does not arrive to us shapeless

and its contours continue.


about the author