There is no atlas for this
country I travel. There are roads
drawn through imaging and scalpels
but none of them named Cherry, Peach, Plum,
or those numbered state and county routes.
Instead we have the foramen semiovale,
not the semi-o valley fruiting between hills of sulci,
and hippocampi are no toothed monsters
drawn in a bestiary who raise their young
into memory sleeping within ventricles;
those caves of flesh, the open spaces
in the brain where we run dreams, but all of it dark
and if there is an express(way) to understand
the flickered, electric dance between synapses
that shapes poetry I don’t know it.
The place poetry flies from
shouting in tongues
is invisible,hidden in a space smaller
than a ganglion tucked in vegetative flesh,
dense as the cauliflower
I pick for dinner and less pretty.
If I held the organic seat in my hands,
the two of them cupped;
mine would look no different than the one I did hold
in anatomy lab.
Hubris is hard to own
when the seat of it is so common, so small
and whispers in that place I hear
but is earless that poetry
is less a quality of brain
and more one of mind; that meld
of body, spirit, and thought
catching something new
in a process old as being
and as hard to define.