Chelan Harkin


Say, "Wow!"

Each day before our surroundings
become flat with familiarity
and the shapes of our lives click into place,
dimensionless and average as Tetris cubes,
before hunger knocks from our bellies
like a cantankerous old man
and the duties of the day stack up like dishes
and the architecture of our basic needs
commissions all thought
to construct the 4-door sedan of safety,
before gravity clings to our skin
like a cumbersome parasite
and the colored dust of dreams
sweeps itself obscure in the vacuum of reason,
each morning before we wrestle the world
and our hearts into the shape of our brains,
look around and say, “Wow!”
Feed yourself fire.
Scoop up the day entire
like a planet-sized bouquet of marvel
sent by the Universe directly into your arms
and say, “Wow!”
Break yourself down
into the basic components of primitive awe
and let the crescendo of each moment
carbonate every capillary
and say, “Wow!”
Yes, before our poems become calloused
with revision
let them shriek off the page of spontaneity
and before our metaphors get too regular,
let the sun stay
a conflagration of homing pigeons
that fights through fire
each day to find us



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