Thursday Poem


There are things I want so badly
and then I don’t want them at all,
so I go to sleep and when I wake up
it’s not desire in heart, crotch, lungs

or brain, it’s outside of myself and coming
at me like the Smog Monster
or that thumb of mossy Jove-smoke
that climbs around Io, nudging

under her arm and around her back,
slowly jibbing her backward off
her stump. It’s not how her head is slipped
in its socket on the top end

of her neck. It’s how the one hand
drops to bring the smog-thing closer;
how the pale other flutters up like a sea-
weed wad, boneless, glad to the dark.

by Daisy Fried
from She Didn’t Mean to Do It
University of Pittsburgh Press, 2000