89 Psaltery & Lyre: Sarah Dunster, “Xenophilia”




The tickle in my ear brings thoughts of

childhood—pupal stages. Dear Lord,

I can’t help but swat out against it;

 God’s creature, so they say.

I wonder how much soul He

 really did pour into that observant beast

clinging to the edge of my water glass,

cocking its tiny head at me?


I try for Xenophilia in my dreams,

In fantasy novels, in dark aureoles;

In my own supposition about the normalcy

of the forward-facing eyes of a predator.

I wish I could wish for clinging toes—

feet that may leave dusty prints along the

 meringue texture of my ceiling;

for a long, spongy tongue to soak up every

scent and granule of the atmosphere around me—

smoke, vapor, tiny flakes of skin and the genetic code

 imprinted on each. I say: what I’d give for eyes 

that see in facets more than three dimensions.


My rancid breath might, then, fill another being

and turn them from stone to flesh,

or from flesh to fire, as any God can raise

the dead to life, and a person

 in his way of seeing—

 not strictly black & white

or even gray, but in tones and shades far beyond

man’s ocular capability.


I would bend myself into an

 impossible position and look out  through my heels,

my head where my feet ought to be, finding

 new angles of humanity.