Essays    Reportage    Marginalia    Interviews    Poetry    Fiction    Videos    Everything   
Two Poems by JoAnna Mak

I’ve never seen my therapist
wear his winter coat outside

Poetry | Poetry Tuesday, poetry
May 28, 2024

I create so much quiet

deliberately grammatical      coworkers      deliver prepackaged
sentence      syntactically excellent       ten shaped beads     in a
truncated envoy      talk here or now     I try not think not     of
good   impassive         my   sic.   speech          words   turned  in
insequential  order        I  eat  ramen this night and a coworker
cries     plarents pay mahjong and a coworker dies     put off by
lack  of  meaning  so  loud    my  team’s express preference  for
memorandilia            good  clean  email           colonial  women
boring language speakers      wonder why not  then  spell  in  a
stalk talk        mock watch        how she does it        & she won’t
tell me     but I’m     why noticing      why spell    away aquarian
one  would  think  of          malapropulsions        each sentence
speaking       slowly            doubles   back           petitions  court
inseparates entity   deorganizes    then unbecomes   erasure of
self     withdrawing  her  meaning      my letters     still arriving
in  every  which way        sum of us        fluent  only  in   feeling
eye limes            queen dimes           I regret           I unform you

when water dries, I don’t know where it goes

I’ve never seen my therapist
wear his winter coat outside

each day, I doctor fables
to close the gap between us

his blistering hologram
his paper doll

each week, we meet for an hour
to search inside my open flap

most weeks, we find
dead birds

once, he pulls out
molded seeds

still good, he says
not beyond saving

he’ll show me to use these
in other ways

we tuck furred cores beneath
the webs of our tongues

moss grows thick on
our heads and hands

he’s not good
as a tree, I liked him
better as a carpenter

I tell him this
and he laughs

sets his mug
on a wooden counter
he may or may not have made

our shared hour
a thick nail of time,

his subsequent absence
a cup stain on the table

what happens if he stays
will he swim through my shadow?

what does he plan to do with
the worst thing I ever did?

the drills split my voice
into stars he cannot hear