Separated from Others · Melanie Du Bose

Separated from others the shape of an ear catches my attention I don’t know where to start, she says and I overhear him begin to give her advice. I don’t know where to start, where to continue or where to end. You just sit there writing, a man says to me, how do you know if what you are writing is any good? Driving fast in the darkness I take the curves hoping for the best, but it is very dark and I don’t really know the way, though the road seems familiar. I am growing weary and images, shadows of trees the color of your eyes cross the windshield. Are you just making it up as you go along? he asks. I think so, but at times order seems to assert itself. Last night moths, spread out evenly across the sky like 1950’s UFOs, dipped toward me as I stood holding the back door looking upward. It seemed a bad sign. A person sleeps on the street and I long to put a pillow under his head but we all accept gifts so badly.

Melanie Du Bose teaches filmmaking to teenagers in East LA. She is a Los Angeles Arts Activate Fellow and a graduate of the UCLA film school. Recent poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Red Flag Poetry Express, antinarrative journal, Right-Hand Pointing/One Sentence Poems, Ekphrastic Review and Contemporary Haibun.