The Maynard
Spring 2015

Allison DeLauer

the neighbors knew i divined water

they were angry with me when i told them
it just wasn’t there
to appease them, my boyfriend at the time
tossed his staff to the ground where it slithered away
this act was caught on video, dubbed, distributed
and sometimes played at our block parties
where we mix kool aid, vodka and lime juice
in such a state the Ladies’ Auxiliary
gathers to perform the Eleusinian mysteries
but I can’t tell you any more about that
(just be grateful you aren’t a pig and
know your mother loves you)
i’m still a little gun-shy around this mob
although i know its home
while the kids pledge their allegiance
to the soda machines i try to imagine
the other, and those people. the museum is full
of their relics: mask, maul and mace
on display these objects make all of us/them look silly
(there is a reason we remember less as we age)
frustrated, i opted for self-exile. at the border
immigration searched me. i was surprised, expecting
they’d ask about vegetables. they found me evasive,
suspicious. they wanted to know what i did for a living
magician’s assistant seemed the wrong answer
and i loathe the term, ‘temple priestess’
(you tell me, am i a character or narrator?
what story? what’s story? whose story?)
it is better a known foe, blah blah
so i went home—watching my back
still thirsty like the rest
to get relief i transformed myself into an octopus
no worries of the well’s pull surrounded by sea—
i left the kool aid, the Auxiliary, and the boyfriend
(he never could satisfy me and his celebrity was trying)
my lair is dark and restful. i am spine-free
my ink, like story, a fog i swim in