The Engine

Though it is full October,

we pry open the train window.

The trees are nearly leafless,

a bare ribcage over the railway.

On the shaky window tray,

I try to write about you

veins of circulatory thought

in train-patterned scribbles

heartbeat graphs within words,

spilling visual palpitations —

I’m terrified of what I do not feel.

We break from the forest

into browning fields.

I hold my pen lightly,

it drags and leaps in blue

as the engine’s churning draws

mountains between words.

Oracle Smoke Machine, Christianne's art-and-poetry collaboration with painter Stephen Proski, is out with Staircase Books (Cambridge, MA).