David Joez Villaverde: Rituals to Lesser Gods

Autumn, ~ π

For Ashley Shearer


ashley had a dream where the three of us sat in a bath drawn of

blood :: in it : we sit in silence : marking the passing of time : with

rituals to lesser gods : the clock ticking as clocks in dreams tick :

intermittently and not at all :: in the dream we are francophiles :

reconstructing the key to the great mysteries from english : tearing

out our hair : without passion : or vanity : as if we believed : that

beauty is just a fire without light :: in my dream i am ripping the

palings off a fence in my parents’ backyard : and you are

somewhere nearby : but unseen : sunning yourself as people sun

themselves in movies : coyly : with oversized sunglasses : reading a

book whose name is illegible if you look directly at it :: each picket

has two galvanized nails : that protrude like envenomated teeth :

whistling an old secret i’ve only just forgotten : the sun still high :

the plinth still perpendicular to post :: when i look up you are gone

and the deck has become the parquet floor of the living room : there

are dust silhouettes where your owl trivets used to hang : a wax ring

where the veladora of mary stood :: i am reaching for a once bitten

apple : the clock : which is now digital : reads three fourteen : and i

wonder aloud if it’s am or pm : even though you have fled : east

into night : and i wonder silently if it’s almost sixteen seconds after

: if : at that moment : it’s precisely pi : to each digit : if : i am

inside something : not infinite but transcendental : irrational a

constant as love : a circumference : a deep recursion : from which

there is only return : where ashley is drawing a bath : or better yet :

a dream

David Joez Villaverde has forthcoming or recently published work in Crab Fat Magazine, Occulum, Wigleaf, 100 Word Short Story, Adbusters, After the Pause, Cheap Pop, and Hoot. He is former editor of the After Happy Hour Review. He can be found at schadenfreudeanslip.com or @academicjuggalo on the Twitter.