From the beginning the deck spoke
as if we were well enough acquainted.
We had no reason to withhold.
Shuffled till they must have lost
all reference, all relevance,
the same cards kept coming back.
Merging with the language of cards
was like merging with the language of words;
It was making a kind of poetry.
That thing was watching me;
I couldn’t sleep deeply
or something would seize me inside
and I’d never belong to myself again.
It still scratches at the windows from outside
Brian Jerrold Koester is a Pushcart Prize nominee and a Best of the Net Anthology nominee. He lives in Lexington, Massachusetts and has been a freelance cellist.