Coming to Terms with Your Nuclear Heritage: Deploying

 

Every use becomes a metaphor

 

for using. Every metaphor for using

 

becomes a reason for using, a link in the chain

 

that has evolved as a chain of pure thought,

 

a chain that fattens or shrinks as a thought

 

may fatten or shrink in any given moment, untouched

 

as it goes in the grove of the mind. Each tree

 

makes way for the next while managing

 

to feed itself fully on the light. Wait.

 

Were we speaking of metal or wood

 

just now? Am I lost?

 

The goal, after all:

 

The word Manhattan

 

is a woman wishing so much

 

for affection

 

that no one will give her any;

 

and, for added irony,

 

the general’s home address. Reorient.

 

As he would say, Recast necessary but unsavory

 

violations of logic, not

 

see what is possible, but

 

see what is possible

 

through.

 

Seen through, his language-environments

 

have grown greedy, speak

 

nuclear heritage,

 

define bomb

 

as birthright. Right. Ask:

 

 

Was your grandfather in the war?

 

Does your dad work at the lab?

 

Why are you writing about this, again?

 

 

***

 

Sara Sams is a poet, essayist & literary translator from Oak Ridge, TN. She earned a B.A. in English from Davidson College and an M.F.A. in Poetry from Arizona State University. She has taught ESL in Granada, Spain & creative writing at the National University of Singapore. She currently teaches composition for second language learners at ASU.

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