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Here’s What Happens If You Lose Your Clothes on a Mountain

May 22, 2012

We kept to the woods
going down, then triangled
house corner by house corner
home. Only moon and planets
noticed, and others’ suns,
and the Turk in the station
doorway. The house
was dark—everyone
in bed. What a relief! It was
a Trojan welcome, though.
Inside, our brothers burst
from the furniture, howling,
swirling axes and frypans and
hammers. Bea grabbed herself
like an artwork and howled too,
and the brothers, finding no one
else to cut or club or threaten,
loosed their rage on us,
with the usual outcome:
Bea rolled into a ball of pain
and I, unstopped—and, this time,
unclothed—stepped past them,
bluffing unconcern. They couldn’t
look, just gulped and returned
to their rooms. So, we too went
to our bed, Bea to tongue her
fingers and I to dream
of giants and monsters
proud on their mountain,
smoking their pipes, dreaming
of jokes and company and
women with no clothes on.
At daybreak, when we got up,
everything was normal again,
except that my favorite dress,
the white one with blue poppies
on it, was lost for good, along with
Bea’s red one. We’d have to sell
a lot of mushrooms to get new ones.

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