A Piece of Art in the Dentist's Office
By William Derge
•   •   •
These bales stacked in Avalon,
your hand resting on my shoulder,
you told me the news
in the most soothing of voices,
the death of the refugee,
how the tractor, overladen,
tipped on the embankment,
my cousin, who had handed me
the roll of bills in the pharmacy,
its pillars of mahogany
reflecting the white light from the street.

We have sifted through the jars of powder
looking for Balthazar’s silver ring,
but I have forgotten what is supposed
to happen when I have found it.

But this red sand through my fingers,
it is so cool.
It must remind anyone who touches it
with the soles of his feet,
it must remind him,
it must remind him.
I breathe in an order of ether
and will not ever die.
•   •   •
William Derge’s poems have appeared in Negative Capability, The Bridge, Artful Dodge, Bellingham Review, and many other publications. He is the winner of the 2010 Knightsbridge Prize, and the Rainmaker Award. He has received honorable mentions in contests sponsored by The Bridge, Sow’s Ear, and New Millennium, among others. He has been awarded a grant by the Maryland State Arts Council. williamderge@yahoo.com

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