October 28, 2015

Good Me Attempts to Neutralize, Rescue, or Otherwise Stifle Bad Me

Good Me Attempts to Neutralize, Rescue, or Otherwise Stifle Bad Me

niagara-falls

by Lindsey Alexander

Oh ne’er-do-well, be quiet now.
Pick up the splinters from your over-
the-falls barrel—I’ll save each chip

for kindling later. I’ve seen the feats
you’ve death-defied to death. If you must
get a tattoo, get a tattoo

of a grid; on it we are each a dot,
parabola between us. We’re never
more than rise-over-run away

from that downward slope
you reel us over. Have one more hit
and go to bed with it. I’ll unpack

your suitcase while you’re sleeping.
I’ll fold your clothes to boot. I’ll leave
a note:

Bad Me,

 Do not press the Do-Not-Press-
This-Button Button. Brush your hair.
If the doorbell rings, don’t answer as Lindsey.

 Yours,
Good Me

I wonder if you wonder if it’s bad

that there’s the two of us in here:
you with your Bowie knife, me
only darning needle–equipped.

I do. Think it’s bad, I mean.

 

 


 Lindsey Alexander‘s poems appear in Crazyhorse, Colorado Review, and Hayden’s Ferry Review, among other magazines. In 2014, she was a scholar at the month-long NEH Institute “Reconsidering Flannery O’Connor.”

Image: Niagara Falls, by William Morris Hunt. Used with permission under creative commons.