Fabric by Carol Ellis

The shirt on the floor crumpled into a human face is nothing more than what I dropped after pulling it over my head. Pulled off in the final jerk of fabric my face lies crumpled in all that it has seen I walk away from my face the resemblance I imagine and the presence of my actual face whose mouth can not say only listen to the words cloth says or a ball in the yard or truck wheels finding a wet road to ride then sounds come in the windows sounds of ocean waves rushing in to say what they see when they hit the rocks casually tossed into the hands of sand.

Pull up a boat sit down light any fire that needs to stay lit watch it burn away what was there. The shirt on the floor winces when who steps on it will not pick it up and throw it in the washing machine full of sloshing waves and boats staying off such rough water instead float tied to the dock when the bay is calm where a fort protects from the invasion and a soldier in unfamiliar uniform watches them walk across the lowered wooden bridge welcomes them into years ago and now into the thought of then and who ran down the hill calling what remembered return to memory.

Carol Ellis lives in Portland, Oregon. She has her Ph.D. in English from the University of Iowa. Her work can and will be found in ZYZZYVA, Comstock Review, The Cincinnati Review, Black Heart. Her chapbook is called I Want A Job. She spent time in Cuba writing another poetry manuscript.