adam phillips
Winner of Valus' Sigil
I wrote the fairy tales, I hoped
you wouldn’t notice. About
the names.

My brain
is millions of years old. It is a safe place
for prokaryotes—

my brain once crawled
up out of an ocean.
Lightning struck the ocean
for one billion years

then a brain crawled up out of it.

There are tunnels in the brain

There is a picture of a lizard’s
brain in the brain

In my brain is a tooth
from the twin I ate;

when my brain crawled
up out of an ocean

it said What is there to eat then

I’d like to write a story containing
chains, wind, marshes haloed

in fog and maybe
figure in a red cloak,

caves beneath the roots of trees—

a lighted window.

Then the world produces
more children. Lightning strikes the earth.
Someone digs a hole

and covers it with leaves.