May 4, 2024 Poetry

“The Dishwasher,” “Splitscreen,” “Countdown,” “Immovable Property”

“The Dishwasher,” “Splitscreen,” “Countdown,” “Immovable Property” Artwork by DALL·E

The Dishwasher

I work the constellations
of soap foam as
the steam rolls up
like little scrolls.
My wife is
still asleep.
I’m careful not to
clatter spoons or whack
plate edges against the sink.
I have a lifetime
of this small service
to offer her
(though I take off
my ring to do the dishes).


We tested the capacity of
our couches, floors, and beds.
We tangled wires
and swapped battery packs,
manuals strewn around the room.
We learned the limits
of grainy graphics
in cramped screen corners.
We lapped each other,
robbed other,
killed each other.
And we grew closer
with every game.


I step on the dust’s deep
fissures, the ground giving
way like a ball of dough.
The clay registers my footprints,
recording my presence until
some future rain.
We’re waiting for
another launch.
No matter how high
those rockets go,
we will search for them on earth—
neon plastic
against the stuff
our bodies become.

Immovable Property

When it crashed down
outside the house,
no one noticed.
The thirty-pound chunk
of iron screamed
through space for days.
It pierced the atmosphere,
and landed like a flopping pike
 on a Swedish man’s land.
It was a postcard
from the cosmos,
sent with no return address.
The Swedish man
fought geologists in court to
keep it.
It is now known as his
immovable property.
But this missive missile
was never stationary.