Archaebacterium


By Richard Fox

Why do you perch on such a low rung
or otherwise teeter on the lowest-slung

branch of life’s up-spiral when Earth
is your dominion & your domicile?

In the delirium that you brought, I heard
the meter of two people breathing,

but when I woke, I was alone.

The navel is a portal & in the off-chance
that I misspoke, how am I to un-look or

un-see that which travels up & down
the evolutionary tree? How did I get stuck

with Original Sin?

Ask Adam or Eve whether it is an easier task
to end or to begin—whether either believes

that the struggle to find the first note of any
song is the same as following the note on its

winding through the last of its wild wild oats.

Oh my little all—breath of hummingbird—
I stall in your largesse. A half-moon grimes

the night; a fast cloud scrubs the sky.


Richard Fox has published widely in many journals. Swagger & Remorse, his first book of poetry, was released in 2007. Hula, a collection of sound poems, is due in 2014. In 2001, he received a grant from the Illinois Arts Council. He holds a BFA in Photography from Temple University, and lives in Chicago.