His breath is held together by boxes –
hushed shut stacks of closed lids stream
on conveyor belts of respiration,
cycling secrets as he dreams –
out an in on esophagus traffic,
productively powered by lung-fulls of steam.
A twist in a hinge, a cog unbuckled:
tumbling boxes break into screams.
Collisions initiate repairs:
cargo is sorted on the ground –
discarded and grieved, swept and salvaged.
Safe. Repacked. Enclosed. Sound.
But once in a while, his tongue lifts a lid:
bulbs of color, released on wings –
selected contents loosed, commingled:
these are the opened gifts when he sings.
With every rent check, I write a little poem. This is one of them. I call them Landlord Poems, unofficially. My current landlord is a landlady, and she is accepting of my activities.