Strange Little Prophets

By Barbara Perez Barbara Perez
When is the smell of a blackberry tree
a harbinger of  violent movement
rather than simply the recollection of
a childhood Sunday dress hem-dipped
in mud, handprinted with juice and seeds?
Hard to say. A mind, when playing tricks
is at its most sincere — at home raking
through the body’s history, repeating
the strange and nostalgic. The taste of
dirty copper, the imagined cockroach
in the corner, the sluggish slow of  the clock
 — doctors call these strange little prophets
warning signs of a seizure, synaptic misfires
looming like a song discordant, until the body
 — an unplucked string — is finally strummed.

Source: Poetry (January 2013).

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This poem originally appeared in the January 2013 issue of Poetry magazine

January 2013
 Barbara  Perez

Biography

Barbara Perez earned her MFA from the University of Massachusetts, Boston. She teaches literature and composition at Northwest Vista College in San Antonio.

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Living, Health & Illness, The Body, The Mind

Poetic Terms Free Verse

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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