Judson Evans

“We die because we cannot connect the end
and the beginning” (Alcmaeon of Croton)
We die because our intentions can’t touch
their toes, because we can’t zip our

freezer bag from inside or heal ends
of the power strip, because we lose the splice

of Scotch Tape and invisibility sticks
to doors, because wicks won’t pollinate

and we can’t laugh in the past tense,
because we were built to careen like hubcaps

not ascend like suits at the dry cleaner,
because of predictions in folds − cheat

notes and fortune cookies, overbite and
undertow − because of the wrong buoyancies

and the right delinquencies. Catch one thread −
snaggle one tooth of the zipper, loosen the spring end

of the toilet paper roller, leave one cancelled
train ticket or condom in an old wallet,

scrawl a writing sample from a finger
slammed in a car door, patch tar or wet

cement in the crawlspace you want to dream
back. It’s too late, your barcode is warped,

your password isn’t recognized, the free
trial is over − nothing

is left open.

Telomere won the Philip Booth Poetry Prize from Salt Hill Review (2013). Telomere was recently set to music by a versatile and gifted student composer at The Boston Conservatory at Berklee, Blake Pilger, and was performed at the Conservatory this past winter.