In response to Margaret Van Patten’s etching Chaos Standing Still
Multicolors fade on the horizon
as you relate a tale of algebra
tutoring gone wrong. Footsteps in the hall
dance on the edge of my vision. Slack rain
lingers on my shoulder, an afterthought
of nature. Somewhere in West Hollywood
a butterfly is flapping its pale wings
while sad ache strokes my bare neck in triumph.
It’s hard work to hold it all together.
Barbed wire around my brain doesn’t keep
me from spinning off my axis one bit.
I listen to your life meandering
to its hopeful destination and smile.
There’s room in the overcast skies for both
of us. We are not the blind fates. Our paths
converge and twist while wings slice the future.
Josette Torres received her MFA in Creative Writing from Virginia Tech. She also holds a BA in English and Creative Writing from Purdue University. Her work has previously appeared in *82 Review, escarp, The New Verse News, and Eunoia Review, and is forthcoming in Tiny Text and Thirteen Ways Magazine. She is currently a doctoral student in cultural thought in the ASPECT Program at Virginia Tech.