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Pet Shop

People are wandering the aisles

looking for a pet. I am there

in the back with the silence


attending the fish and stones

who know about the false

currency under our tongue.


Even the walking-sticks disappear

among the reeds. They know we are thieves,

having stolen the fruit, water, fire…


Our grandmothers are live

ash, long white braids of smoke

rising into the hole in the sky,


leaving unrecognized by our children,

who continue trying to catch

anything that moves.


No loitering. Do not touch.

You break, you pay.

When no one is looking


I offer my fingertips.

Gold surfaces from the dark,

lips, soft as an infant’s ears.


All day and all night

people tapping the glass,

desire to see, to be seen.






© Robert S. Pesich, all rights reserved. This poem first appeared in the anthology And We The Creatures, 2003

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