You can't trust
a hammer to hold onto its handle,
a Phillips head to cozy up
to its tool box. You won’t see
the Merlin swoop past the dumpster
and into your yard, but in the middle
of your first down dog, the mystery
of the avian world is revealed
in a pile of exploded gray feathers.
You can’t trust the butcher
to give you the best cut of pork;
this is because pork shoulder
is a metaphor for life.
The husband kept saying
a cabin in the woods,
not a second home; a place
for year-round pickling
and canning, while the wife
dipped her pretzel in the mustard
like the electric yellow skyline
she loves. Not only can’t
you trust your husband not to
lie, you can’t trust the filtered water
is filtered, that the dormant volcano
is dormant. I asked for another beer.
By the time it arrived I was heading
into the screwdriver night.
Martha Silano is the author of four books of poetry, including Reckless Lovely, The Little Office of the Immaculate Conception (winner of the 2010 Saturnalia Books Poetry Prize), and Blue Positive. She is co-editor, with Kelli Russell Agodon, of The Daily Poet: Day-By-Day Prompts for your Writing Practice. Saturnalia Books will release Gravity Assist, her fifth poetry collection, in early 2019. Martha’s work has appeared in Poetry, Paris Review, American Poetry Review, and New England Review, among others. The recipient of Yaddo’s 2017 Martha Walsh Pulver residency, she teaches at Bellevue College.