Iron Age – K. E. Duffin

How the mind bends and blurs,
making itself a pinhole camera.
Colors run and shadows seep.
Light left too long on a sidewalk

How she moves the silver weight
back and forth expertly,
tear-drop holes exhaling steam like the gills
of a metal creature nosing around pockets,
making pleats.

Smell of damp cotton,
tock of the dial settings.
Then trudge, trudge, trudge as she
slowly ascends the basement steps,
turning slightly side to side.

Fatly it sits on its haunches, hissing.
Taskmaster. Water gulper. Sputterer.
Feeding through its snaky, black tail,
drawing energy from within the walls,
within her mind.


About the Author: “Iron Age” describes the uncanny within the domestic, a mind on the edge of the abyss, unreachable, yet expertly performing the ordinary. It’s part of a long, forensic farewell to the unfathomable. My work has appeared in Agni, The Carolina Quarterly, The Cincinnati Review, Kestrel, The Moth, Ploughshares, Poetry, Prairie Schooner, Scintilla, Southern Poetry Review, Thrush, Verse, Zymbol, and other journals. King Vulture, a book of poems, was published by the University of Arkansas Press.

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