When I look past the potted plants
through the window’s rectangulated muntins,
down through the newly coated porch rails,
past the trunks and tortured branches
of the holly and the oak,
to the ground snows, where, cold and dry,
no squirrels run, no bird descends,
no rotting pumpkin rind extends
its smell of putrefaction,
where leaf mulch poking through
covers the unseen,
I, suddenly present,
know my sight as layer one,
behind which compartmentalized
all the layers of my history

James Cox lives in Whittier, North Carolina, not far from the road to nowhere. During his youth he was struck by lightning and entered an alternate reality. Now, he writes philosophy and poetry and meditates.