September 2018

Back to Issue 4

Red Wire, Blue Wire

By Damen O’Brien

We could have seen the mistakes
we were making
if we’d been far enough away.

Love is a wholly human singularity.
When we struggle beneath its event horizon
all we can think of
is the overwhelming crush.

Who knows what is happening
in that intimate space?
Only the distant drift of stars.

If we’d been carried like
the reactant parts of a bomb
far away from each other
we’d have seen the shape of the explosion.

I used to think that hell might be
the opportunity to live any action
I ever did
from the point of view
of the other person.

Now I think
to understand what was really going on
and have her understand
might be heaven.

Three points of reference
for a stationary object.
Four points to
define a moving one.

If we could see the shape of things
we’d know if we were
going to succeed,

but we have always been
too close to the bomb
and the people that could have told us
were too far away.