I Went To The End Of The Earth For You... // A.J. Huffman
I Went To The End Of The Earth For You . . .
. . . and i found a cockroach, a cheeseball, and a pink floyd cd, holding in silent stasis. it was not playing forward or backward, just seemed to rotate stagnantly in that momentary pause before repeat kicks in. i watched tireless antennae flail in time to a beat that wasn’t there. i couldn’t help but think, as the strangely florescent ball of puff fluff dissolved on my tongue, that this was a place of answers i was not ready to understand.
. . . and i found a pair of suns. one was wavering in the intense heat of the other, becoming more shadow than mirror. for that i was glad, the desire to gaze upon my own reflection is a trait absent from my dna. instead i listened to their silent conversation, quickly forgetting i was deaf, and daughter of a far more vulgar language. i feared asking their names, so i gave them my own. they took it gratefully, split it in two, setting our respective echoes free.
. . . and i met memories dressed as stuffed animals of varying ferocity. they invited me to dinner, but i declined.
. . . and i fired a gun backwards, my trigger finger inhaling the bullets, easy as air. i was the boom that could not bang, the volcano with arid sandy core. i climbed myself as if I sacrificed myself.
. . . and i listened to the resonance of my mind as it searched for the definition of fracture. saw the crash before it happened, was glad i had packed the necessary cables and alternative power core needed to reboot.
. . . and i fashioned a life raft from broken promises and unattainable dreams. i painted it pepto bismal pink, though the vision failed to calm my stomach. it shifted sideways, lurched upward, hoping to escape in a scream when i saw my heart wrapped in garish yellow life preserver, drowning not waving from the center of a lonely sea.
. . . and i asked a shark and three butterflies for directions to any point in the sky that was divisible by two. they stared at me blankly, confused by the accuracy of their calculations. the butterflies offered to skewer me over a heatless flame. i thanked them, but chose the more visible teeth, smiling beneath a land-loving fin.
. . . and i promised i would remember to forget the master key, then promptly tied it to my neck. i swear i heard it laughing as it melted into my skin, turning me into the perfect, unbreakable lock.
. . . and i set my eyes adrift on a pool of battery acid, forgetting they never knew how to walk. i fired a row of wickless candles along the shore, projecting my last flash of imagination against the sky. it almost worked. just before they fell from view, their shadows took the shape of two random, mismatched ships crashing in the night.
. . . and i built a wall that was not there out of bricks i could not carry. they conspired to usurp my view of the world you put behind me, though i could still see quite clearly that my footprints had never travelled there.
A.J. Huffman has published thirteen full-length poetry collections, fourteen solo poetry chapbooks and one joint poetry chapbook through various small presses. Her most recent releases, Degeneration (Pink Girl Ink), A Bizarre Burning of Bees (Transcendent Zero Press), and Familiar Illusions (Flutter Press) are now available from their respective publishers. She is a five-time Pushcart Prize nominee, a two-time Best of Net nominee, and has published over 2500 poems in various national and international journals, including Labletter, The James Dickey Review, The Bookends Review, Bone Orchard, Corvus Review, EgoPHobia, and Kritya. She is also the founding editor of Kind of a Hurricane Press.
view of the world you put behind me, though i could still see quite clearly that my footprints had never travelled there.