Stone Telling

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Tricks of the Mind

by Valentina Cano

If I contrive this,
shape it into a pattern of
buttons I can count,
maybe I can
make myself believe it.
Swallow it down like slurpy syrup,
tug at my hair until it bleeds
in acceptance.
But, if I do believe it,
it'll erase the tumbleweeds
I've been sewing,
their wings of bones and twigs
will crumble down into the sand in my head,
that hourglass I tip over
and over to keep myself alive.
I'll manage, I suppose.
I'll tie my shoelaces every day,
and feed the dogs as my brain
chips apart like flung porcelain.
The counters will hold as I drip
invisible blood onto them.
The stairs will not break
as my empty shoes
drag themselves up and down.
Everything will be the same.

Valentina Cano is a student of classical singing who spends whatever free time she has either reading or writing. Her work has appeared in Exercise Bowler, Blinking Cursor, Theory Train, Magnolia's Press, Cartier Street Review, Berg Gasse 19, precious metals and will appear in the upcoming editions of A Handful of Dust, The Scarlet Sound, The Adroit Journal, Perceptions Literary Magazine, Welcome to WhereverThe Corner Club Press, Death Rattle, Danse Macabre, Subliminal Interiors, Generations Literary Magazine, Super Poetry Highway and Perhaps I'm Wrong About the World. You can find her here:

Read Valentina's discussion of this poem at the Roundtable: here and continued here.