A Body Zoo, John Johnson

Community Has Its Perils, Tim Timmerman
(ink, watercolor, and gouache, 8″x8″)


Audio for A Body Zoo

A Body Zoo

When he said “I love you,” she asked “Who are you quoting?”

Someone on a speeding train tosses a ball straight up.
Someone standing beside the tracks tosses a ball straight up.

He’d been waking before the alarm, his mind gray with thought.
Shrew-like creatures hurried through his dreams.

She traced a line from metric feet to moment arms, opposable tongues,
nerve cells that tick with the missing present.

A stutterer resists the sentence, speech the page.
Fossils in our mouths we keep trying to swallow or say.

Snakes licked Cassandra’s ears clean, and she understood the language of animals.
“Like listening for overtones,” she said, “multiples of fundamentals.”

John Johnson
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