I swallowed the pill/smoked the dope that gave the self a self
And fought to be mindful of the boney oak.

A river drags its scratch in the dirt,
a mountain swells in a sob.

I leave my body, blank and sweet, like taking off a dress.
I leave my breasts, spare as the backstairs, 

The shoulders’ boney ledges, the sediments of sex.
And yet . . .

I’m not so sure about this, I said to friends
who were sleek with selflessness.

We’re just passing by they said
to dogs choking on their chains in yards.

If the self is a house, whose house are we?
I asked the oak 

which stood on the shore of a river,
its sturdy brush strokes drowning

in the shivery foliage of  other trees.
I, too, stood on a shore, 

lost, and looking myself like a river
with many currents, 

forlorn, forgotten, died out, neglected,
even now disappearing into the crowds of these words.