by Matthew Dickman

Then I’m in the light again –
light of the mouth, light
of the fingernails, the two
empty doors of the toaster light,
and the light in the hallway
making its acid dance
out of dust and fibers and dirt
and hairclips. I know now
that I am the air between
my teeth and the air
above the floor
as much as the sky is the air
around the volcano,
around the airplane,
around the For Lease medical
building, I know, I know,
shhh… everything
is going to be ok, is going to be
cake and frosting, a swimming
pool, a broken wave
like the arm of a two-year-old,
I know how angry
you can get, how you want
to beat the blood
out of all the bags, I know,
it’s ok, I’m lying on the floor being
the lungs for the room,
for the couch, for the bookshelves,
the lungs for the toilet
and the lungs for the toilet seat.
One day in the middle
of summer, I was eighteen
years old and the lungs
of everything alive, the lungs
of the school yard
and the lungs of a jellyfish.
I want my skin to keep
breaking into light, keep breaking
into a fistfight over how good
I feel. I want you to swallow
your tongue.