She sits on a throne made of scissors
and yellowing, leather-bound books
that melds and fuses, a mutated tree
reaching sixty feet in the air. Burning
shelves fume a coliseum semicircle
around us. The library smells of charred
ink. She is calm though her feet are
absorbed up to ankle by this twisting
clay of hope. Though a hand is a scissor
blade. Though an eye is just a blinking
marquee scrolling, I am an eye. I ask if
she is okay. She serpents down and replies:
Nothing I do is for myself.
It is all for a distant you.
I am a doll in an unbroken
chain. Days: just paper
dolls. Hand in hand in hand in
hand. A culminating effort.
I have no sister. Only you.
seeing you as separate.
Seeing you as charging
ahead, knowing what to do.
I shut the curtain of time
as if re-zipping fruit.
My hand turns to paper
as it leaves the velvet drape.
The fingers grasping for future
grip are singed, soft-glowing gold.