Though She Does Not Like Insects

by Thomas O’Connell

There are times when my wife
Is Luis Buñuel, in her disconcerting use
Of repetition, wanting to discuss things
We have already discussed,

and resolved
But wanting to discuss them
once again

And question our resolve.
Her non sequitur shifts
From one topic to another, for which she sees a thread
Though, as I am not -usually- inside
Her head, I find difficult

to follow.
The way she talks about
our children

Instead of at them or to them, when they are present
Asking “what does Verity want to drink
With dinner?” instead of asking our daughter
Directly, as if the girl

were missing.
If we go out to a movie theatre,
as infrequently

As we do, she fills her pockets with stones, just in case.
When it rains, if it rains hard, the sheep
In the field across the street refuse to graze
And just stand completely still-

Like wet sweaters-
staring at us intently

Which makes my wife feel sorry for the sheep.
I don’t know if this bothered Luis Buñuel or not.
Someday I will read a biography about him
And if it says that wet, pensive

sheep made him cry
I will not be in the least bit


[Thomas O’Connell is a librarian living on the banks of the Hudson River in Beacon, NY, where he was the 2015-2016 poet laureate. His poetry has appeared in Elm Leaves Journal, Otoliths, Blue Earth Review, and Hobart (online), as well as other print and online journals.]