The Folklore


Shortly after crawling from the river, the folklore

Died of pernicious diseases. Died upside down

In our wishing well, showing its bloomers.

Someone spat on the folklore. Someone dipped

The folklore, like a candle, in lye. Someone

Washed the folklore’s corpse. Someone put

The folklore under a sun lamp, but the folklore

Did not revive. When I next saw the folklore,

It was filing papers in a basement office,

Trying to tip the vending machine over, loving

The salty and the sweet. I shook out all the snacks,

Now I am the ugly wife of the folklore, we kiss

Our ugly faces together, clammy. We go out

For ice cream, we love apples, we hold hands

Under the table. We eat peanuts, wipe grease

On our skirts, get married over and over. We

Are tipsy in the hot afternoon, swaying along

With the sunflowers. Once a year the folklore

Rides away on a little pig, I weep in our manor,

I shield my eyes with straw. Then the folklore

Comes back with beads, honeycombs, GigaPets,

We are in love again. Knocking against each other,

Lurking in each other’s dreams like sharks.

We go to the natural history museum, disappear

Into the tanned cloaks of extinct peoples. We,

Too, are extinct and rolling down a hill, scooped

By grass. How much longer can we go on living,

Dying, seeking the other in each inherited world.

When you, the folklore, first swam towards me,

You grabbed my ankles, you heaved yourself

Onto the banks, onto me. Dripping, we began.