The poet always wonders if Rose lives on the backside of a mountain in Peru. If she does, does she grow gorgeous potatoes? Purples and reds and those that curve in lovely shapes like little bent penises. Does she rub the pale potato-starch on her face to keep it supple? When thunder rolls down the alpine face is there a place to hide? Under a bed or behind an armoire made of teak and inlaid with mother-of-pearl. Does lightning flashing turn the grass as green as hand-dyed alpaca wool? Does she see a new world then, and spider-webs spun in dim corners to be knocked down with an old sweat-sock stuffed with batting and tied to the end of a yard stick? Does she hear the song of the fulvous wren and does it get into her heart?

Lisa Cihlar