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Giggling Anthills

by L. S. Popovich

the dog is asleep under the Christmas tree
with a belly full of wrapping paper and toilet water
hahahas and hohohos tumble out of me
in an avalanche that turns my face blue

my willowy smile hollowly echoes
a marionette’s spring-loaded mouth
stuttering pogo-stick scissor-jaws

the sound of rain funneling through a spout
out of breath, billowing spillage
leathery eyes water
teeth pitter-patter, expanding in tandem

a dying man becomes a child
dream-boogers fondled out of eyes
diaper full of mothballs
drycleaned thighs peppered and salted
with exalted age-spots and accentuating hairs
light clinging to them with love
in elderly, moist, asthmatic ecstasy

I am torn with tears

straitjacket ribcage fit to burst
arms boneless as elephant ears

Finally I find myself askew

a journey has been passed
but the world could spasm
any second into a chasm

a playful thought comes
through the laughing window
and hovers over my bed
to tickle my naked ears
with the knowledge of something

I can only wait for the next laugh

a whiplash tongue spackles wrinkled walls
varnished button-nose running delightful spittle
narrow eyes harrowed by a crackling tinfoil grin
seismically active flab
gnarled fingers
curling toes
carwash eyelashes batter eyes
sizzled brow ripping stitches
fruit-juice porcupines exploding in my brain

cramping muscles surge with dream-lightning
squeamish bowels tremble
heart-valves shutter

a tragic clown blubbering
with pie-encrusted beard
cotton candy hair defiled
wallowing in trout-shoes
and varicolored underpants
balloon-brassiere deflated
plum-tomato nose bruised
flushed buttocks dimpled with embarrassment

laughter is forgotten in the same way
dreams are disremembered

blood-vessels bursting in bleary eyes
scratching scabs that peel away
and lie in wait like hibernating cockroaches

what is this coyote disease coming over me?

I writhe as if birthing
some demented mutation from my loins
naked in the doctor’s hands
what have we here? spanked, handed over
to an exhausted mother whose quivering
arms rest me on that stomach dome
the home I slithered from
a punctured hot-air balloon
a sanctum, smooth-walled
raw with my claw-marks
she doesn’t have the strength to laugh
only smiles

sorrow sticks in my mind
honey in a honeycomb
lips shiny with dew
nose-hairs tingling

it is a struggle to weep
mirthful contractions come on their own
an epileptic saliva string symphony strangulation

a million droplets of rain
an army of words cannot contend with a good laugh
each laugh-unit comes out
uncountable but defined
spurting in a line

whales bathe
barnacles and stars
twinkle on gargantuan faces
their slightest chuckle resounds for thousands of miles

but the laughter of an ant
spreads from hill to hill
through interconnected arteries
passes like a virus between drones
until it shakes the world

when time is measured by grains of sand
each precious laugh is bottled and passed on
sustained for eons

I’ve heard it ten thousand times
but am I anxious for it to end?

Copyright © 2019 by L. S. Popovich

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