Dillon J. Welch

The Secret



It’s simple, really. You take this thimble

of cough suppressant and dance like a tree

debranching. You fill the dance hall with all

the finest decorum. Destroy the honorary

watermelon with a giant wooden mallet.

Say grace! Praise Jesus! Feel healthy!

In time the tune will ring like a hotel

dial tone. In time we’ll wear an old pair

of sandwich meats. Discuss politics. Join

a rotary club. We’ll find a prehistoric

lawnmower at the town-wide yard sale.

When I say Town-wide you say

No-way. When I say let’s decorate

the chimney with lots of fresh smoke,

agree. I’ll bring in the wood when I’m

damn near ready. When it’s time to burn

we obviously do. That’s why I bought you

these protective goggles. I’m sorry so

sorry they only came in orange. Call it credence.

Call it plutonium. Call it firing the rifle

far too soon. In this really proactive

dream I had, I was circling a fish

with a little toy boat. The fish

could talk and the boat was almost

never sinking. I remember what

the fish said: be well and try

harder. Nothing really makes sense

if you stare at it long enough. If you think

about boats and fishes and fires. One time

in a dream I was a boat

on fire. It was painful, being a boat

on fire, the water so close.


DILLON J. WELCH is an MFA candidate in Poetry at NYU. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in CutBank, ILK, inter|rupture, Jellyfish, Phantom Limb and other journals. He is currently Editor of AMRI and Poetry Editor of Swarm.