What was it you said about the reptilian brain? About
how you attribute your compulsions to its functions, to
the folding and layering of that gray, limbic matter,
about how during fight-or-flight scenarios you choose
And then you mentioned something about the original wound,
that cavernous, ceaseless depth to which you dive again and
again, but it’s never clear why or for how long, and after prolonged
safaris down there, the surface, that thin blue plane separating
oxygen and hydrogen, seems not like ascension but a reversion to
something more primitive, more human.
And you think about those eskimos in Alaska, how they have
64 words to describe snow, and how lovely it would be to float
on air, a feathery, symmetrical crystal with so many names to
label yourself, and it would be so simple, so beautifully rudimentary.
Michael O'Neill writes fiction and poetry in Chicago. His work has appeared in Maudlin House, Ghost City Press, WhiskeyPaper, Literary Orphans, Unbroken Journal and Great Lakes Review, among others.