There is no truth in this.
Look: the bed is made.
The chair is where I left it.

But O. What of near
misses, umbrellas upturned in high
wind; what of wearying hats,

senseless hair. What should I have done
with you, or with the blackbird
dead on the curb?

We are a thin kind. My hands
are unsettled. There is no rose on my table.
But there is a toad, and his eyes are sweating.

Francine Conley is a poet, performer, and artist. She has a chapbook, How Dumb the Stars (Parallel Press, 2000), and has written and produced eight one-woman multimedia shows, including the most recent: “I Swear I Can Fly” (2010). Published poems have appeared in journals such as Harpur Palate, Ginko Tree Review, Paris/Atlantic, among others. A recent MFA graduate of the Warren Wilson Creative Writing program, she currently resides in Minnesota where she teaches in International Languages & Literatures at Saint Catherine University in Saint Paul.

See more of her work in Issue 2.4.