Chaos Theory

Chaos Theory
Gretchen Tessmer

in a dragonfly’s nest of nettles, nothing
sings more than flutters over wire-rimmed
wings, which
spooked the horses
and caused a stampede
that grew and grew
with a reckless nature
reminiscent of
Jack’s old beanstalk
pushing up floorboards
and breaking barriers between worlds
with noise enough to wake giants
and make mischief
from the tattered war tent
of the last, great
King of Five Star Systems
all the way
to the roots and fuzzy down
of Methuselah’s favorite peach tree

under which
the old man naps
as the sea comes inland
with desperate intentions
to cover everything
from horizon to horizon
as if death is the only thing
meant to be

and here I stand, daughter of nobody
up in the tawny branches
eating a ripe, pale peach
being difficult, as always
(oh, I don’t know any way else to be)

refusing to return to the ground
until the goddamn water
agrees to recede

Gretchen Tessmer is a writer/attorney based in the U.S./Canadian borderlands. She writes both short fiction and poetry, with work appearing in Nature, Strange Horizons and F&SF, among other venues.