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OMEGA | Jamie Mortara
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Jamie Mortara

23 Sep Jamie Mortara


in this scene
are a Crow
and i
am a Crow
and we are both
in a tree
and Crow-You
turns to
and says:
it’s temporary

Crow-Me asks:
what is

and Crow-You replies:
there is a kind of
casual anger
in a tornado

so Crow-Me stops
and pecks
at nothing
people can be such
terribly nice
you ever think
you were so dead-set
on getting your wings back
that you took mine
without noticing

Crow-You retorts:
is a painting still
a Still-Life
if the flowers are all wilt

i watched it born
i can watch it die
says Crow-Me

so Crow-You stops
and pecks
at nothing
all these poems
sound like someone
to teach themself piano
do people
at you
when you tell them
about me

so Crow-Me
glides over
across the street
to a different tree
at first
there was someone
and then
there was not
in the beginning
there was darkness
and then
there was more darkness

you gonna act
brand new
Crow-You retorts

i don’t want to die
even when i do
Crow-Me whispers

and with that
over the street
and sits too close
to Crow-Me
Crow-You looking
almost sorry
but still
not really

you ever wonder
if we are each
a glass house
Crow-Me asks
you ever worry
we are both throwing stones
at all the different people
inside of us



i must confess
i have forgotten what a fence looks like
when it ain’t a rental

i have forgotten the frustrating irony
that “razing” something
is to demolish it

i too worry
that i am a door
with nothing underneath it

that i am just
a single wish
inside of a wall

did Oedipus’s family honestly think
they could leave their problems
on a mountaintop to die?

you ever get a splinter
and watch your skin
gradually grow it out of you?

my father used to dig them
from my body
with a hot sewing needle

he used to cut trees
like a pained and reluctant duty
like he was putting down a wounded animal

i am so desperate to preserve
this monument
to failure

i am trying so hard to hide this stubborn building
like a rock tumbling around
in my stomach

and inside my body
there are beams
all unabashedly cracked

there is a lonely switch with two settings:
one side is for CARING TOO MUCH
the other side is for NOT CARING AT ALL

you can’t see her
but even right now
there is a little girl inside of me

she is flipping that switch
back and forth
as fast as she can



i have been told that i always smell like coffee
and that the coffee
always smells like the Emergency Room
i have been told that i am
an Emergency Room
that from far away
i look just like a person
but whomever you worship
sounds like such
a hungry god
i suspect that heaven
tastes like aspartame
i’m crying right now at the market
because it’s too expensive to be this broke
i could swallow a whole sky right now
but i will settle for the moon
you’ll shake your head at the dollar menu
or at least until you need it
here’s the truth as distilled as i can make it:
a few of us do the eating but most of us
do the dishes


jamie mortara is aleatoric and indeterminate.

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