Carol V. Davis
Originally published in the November 2012 issue of Empirical
In the end, the sky did not fall,
nor the earth move, for that matter.
Only the squat tooth rumbled
in its cage, saying:
Enough confinement, set me free!
Worried it would incite its neighbors,
urge the other molars to take up the chant,
loosen from their moorings, I pleaded
with the dentist to see me on his day off.
When he turned off the spot light and
lowered the chair, he warned of a
I regretted that call, sure this
half-hour encounter would cause
an earthquake in the bank account.
Why is every small decline of the body
a betrayal, as if a treaty had been broken
or a faithful ally switched sides without warning?
I stepped out of the medical building,
the sky darkening under the threat of rain.
Circling crows landed in pairs on the broken sidewalk,
one to distract the woman, the other to snatch her purse.
Or maybe they knew what went on behind closed doors.
Were going to make a run for it, gathering those gold
and silver nuggets the dentist surely hoards.
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