three poems
by Cassandra de Alba

the bears

It is too warm in March and the bears come out of hibernation early. In the supermarket, the berries are still from South America and expensive. One of the bears shambles into the bowling alley, but the shoes are all too small and they ask him to leave. Some of the bears ask the popular girls to prom, get rejected, and go back into hibernation, lie splayed on their cave floors listening to shoegaze. The largest of the bears goes to IKEA and spends a few days startling employees who find him asleep on the Swedish furniture, or eating a whole tray of meatballs. They let him stay because he's so polite, and people start coming to IKEA just to see the bear, buy the ‘bear-approved bed' he'd slept in most recently. Environmental groups picket the store and demand that the bear be released into its natural habitat, but every time the employees lead the bear to the front doors and hold them open, he shakes his head like a swimmer clearing his ears of water and plods back into the model bedrooms. A millionaire actress tries to buy the bear and he gets offended and goes back to his cave; it takes him until August to readjust to sleeping on the floor.

jurassic park redux

I reanimate our feelings for each other
and for a while they just stomp around
in their enclosure, eating the meat I throw them
and acting passive-aggressive.
But of course something goes wrong
and our feelings for each other discover
their taste for human flesh
and menace some children hiding in a kitchen.
We have to escape from our feelings for each other
in a helicopter, and looking down
we agree that some things go extinct
for a reason, that whatever meteor
wiped out our feelings for each other
in the first place
was right on target.

the sum of our parts

"When the microwave bees, take out the waffle and put it on a plate."
- instructional book by Luke, age seven

Maybe we are disassembling ourselves.
Maybe we are splitting the atom
only to find ourselves made
of what we don't know how to name.

Or we are made of model spaceships,
lightbulb filaments, first stars.
The living room table
is part lead bullets and left shoes.
The house is a series
of impossibly perfect seashells.
The microwave is all bees.

You and I are One Way signs
pointing in all different directions.
We are made of tree stumps.
We are made of melting snow.

Cassandra de Alba lives in Somerville, MA with two roommates and a cat named Roger Mindfucker. She's read poetry on stage in at least 12 different states, wishes on every shooting star for another season of Rock of Love, and once sold a scone to Kevin Bacon.
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