Evolution

by Abner Dormiendo

Here we are in the room with no water.
Here we are sitting face to face, suspended
animation, mirrored sea, mirrored sky. One of us
has to be the ocean, then. Which one? The one
with the most life, maybe. I’m not sure which.

Here we are in the room feeling our necks
with our fingers, searching for scars on the side
just below the nodes. Or the possibility of it, don’t
worry love, it’s just a theory. Which one? Evolution,
I mean. No one knows for sure if it happened.

But here we are in the room again. Here we are
swimming in the pools of our bed, the ponds
of our bed, waves of sheets, drowning in the
chlorinated air. I am singing bubbles. I am singing
I was a fish, I was a fish. I invented the melody,
did you like it? Which one? The song I just sang.

And here we are in the room again. The earth
is humming a song of the end. It has been singing
that song since god knows when. But we can make
guesses when it happened. Big bang? Probably
a bit later than that. Ice age? That’s more realistic.
Have you heard of the drift, darling? No, not
the one we are doing right now, my back turning
away from your back, rolling away in this sea
of cotton. It smelled like flowers. Which one?

The room. The room again. You are cracking
eggs in a pan. I want my yolk intact, be careful.
About what? The egg, I mean. Not the question.
I know there’s a question hanging on the roof
of your mouth, I saw it. Luminescent like glowworms
in some ancient cave. Spit it out. Which one? You tell me.

And we’re back to the room again. Back to the
question and you are still breaking eggs. Ask me which
came first, the chicken, the egg, or the fall? I don’t know.
But definitely not the question. So cook it well, love.
Pour some salt. Pour an ocean worth of salt. Make me
miss the sea. I want to relearn how to breathe underwater

again. The room again. And I’m choking in the air
again. Tell me about the first fish who walked on land,
do you remember that story? He was arguing with his
lover. About what? Maybe how horrible the dinner was,
who knows. Were they shouting? They were shouting, probably.
The neighbors are hearing them, peering through their
coral houses. You never listen to me, said the fish.
But he does, doesn’t he? Or she, not that it matters.
It listens intently, and it doesn’t like what it is hearing.

And then they go back to their rooms again.
Try to reconcile, but they cannot. Try to make love
but they cannot make things appear out of thin air,
sea foam, fragile bubble, don’t break yet. I’m getting
closer to the end. And then what happens? In the story,
I mean. Well, exasperation, as how everything ends
anyway, the fish walking away, turning the fins into
makeshift feet and gingerly like a newborn toddler
teeters up the slippery sandy slope to the ancient shores,
and someone is shouting with a muffled sound
don’t walk away from me aren’t you listening,
I have had enough, don’t walk away while I’m
talking to you, come back. But by now it is too late.

***

DISCLAIMER: This is not the poem I wrote for NaPoWriMo Day 7 (the prompt was to write a love letter to an inanimate object), but I was dissatisfied with what I wrote for it so here, have this instead. Something less suckish, I’d like to think.

PS: This doesn’t count as a non-prompt poem since I wrote one for Day 7 anyway, so I think I still have three non-prompt cards. Haha.

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