On its way to dust, a large leaf
from our neighbor’s tree to look around.
Strolling by on my usual route,
to admire tips of green, cheeks of red, and veins of gold—
a collision of existence in one body,
burning its handprint into the sidewalk.
It is such hard work
to glide atop the water
when you’re not a swan.
I just pinched my license
like another rectangle
I hold too much
on my second visit to the bank
to cash the same check
in a single afternoon.
Leopards do not think on their spots any more than the sky thinks on the stars.
I am a luminous leopard, a constellation in Converse.
No one picks on pumpkins in September, earnestly coming into their own.
The fields of my cheeks grow flush in the early autumn sun.
A drop cloth needn’t cover the colorful chaos it catches.
These facets of my face have been freed from angels’ lips.
So, if you must inspect them, asking whence my freckles came,
I will open my hands heavenward in reply.
Thank you for joining me. I am so glad you’re here!