I don't think I'm ready to talk to you. / It could be that I'm afraid of something. / Well, it must be that I'm afraid of you. / But when I hunt for fear behind my eyes, / I find black slate, or maybe it's gypsum. / The fear, though fear is a weak word for it, / threads with a bodkin, into my abdomen, / and coils back out. It's the stitch that slings / us into day, overshooting our gifts, / and hurdling us through unknown diseases. / If I'm afraid, I'm afraid of the future, / of you, on the handling end of this string, / tired of twitching your yoke thé buffoon, / tired and looking for something else to do.
a version of this sonnet was originally published in The Denver Quarterly