Two Suns

Martha Owens

The sleek crows have gathered again,
strutting, and proclaiming loudly to me
Odin hanging in a tree,
the suffering god of poetry.

Today I am busy rocking on a rotting
porch in my red-flowered sundress
and eating an oatmeal pie, but I
only taste the thickness of my steady glare

because I am angry about
the two suns; therefore, I can’t listen
to any talk of Norse gods and poetry today.

The crows squawk sacred runes incessantly at me,
as if Odin were hanging in the woods
right behind the house,

and I finally break down and ask them to
lay their mind-darkening wings
over my eyes, to cover the sight of the
two fire-orbs overhead and the flashing
sparkler-lights around my ankles.

I would choose to have two, moist oatmeal pies
in place of my eyes, which try hard not to see
what isn’t there. Then, if I gave up one eye,
as Odin did, the other one would cry
thick, white tears of cream filling.

I will keep rocking and try not to worry
about which sun is made of hydrogen,
and which one is the product of
a dysfunctional limbic system,

and I will keep eating Nordic runes that taste like desire
spread evenly between two grainy cakes of chewy confusion.

A native of Kanawha County West Virginia, Martha Owens lives in western North Carolina and teaches British literature at Thomas Jefferson Classical Academy.  Her poems have appeared in Wisconsin ReviewNorth Carolina Literary ReviewPembroke MagazineGray's Sporting JournalLyricist, and NatureWriting.  When she is not working or writing, she is trying to train her little dog, Petee.