You — Zombie
You—zombie—felt a century passing
and you loved it, having seen what there was
to see, as in your state you saw only
what would elicit continuation.
You had to debate what was important
to you: the television, the photo
albums, the incontinent terrier?
The heart of your son, the heart of your mom,
the hearts of strangers frightened in the night?
Despite illness, it remained possible
to engineer complex analogies
regarding the fundamental nature
of the human condition. A fact, though,
was that even on your very best days
you yearned to eat all the flesh you could find
though you’d long ago recognized that’s all
it was: just flesh. Not life. Not truth. Not love.
In the village of zombies we zombies
pull limbs from the living because we are
lonely, because it is what we must do.
Nick Courtright’s second book, Let There Be Light, called “a continual surprise and a revelation” by Naomi Shihab Nye, came out in February 2014, and his debut full-length, Punchline, a National Poetry Series finalist, was published in 2012 by Gold Wake Press. His poetry has appeared in many literary journals, including The Southern Review, Kenyon Review Online, Boston Review, and The Iowa Review, among numerous others. He lives in Austin, Texas; feel free to find him at nickcourtright.com.