Long Drive

Sister, listen.
Zeus swallowed his first wife.

So why should it surprise me when,
after driving in silence for hours,

my husband knocks me back
in one quick gulp?

Here I sit, captive in the belly,
composing songs on the lining of his stomach.

I clang them on his xylophone of ribs.
(I am furious with his ribs.)

He inside his husk of solitude
(I am angry with this husk) is happy.

I have only my unruly brood of thoughts
for company, and they have found a stick

with which they poke his shriveled liver
like tending a sick flame.

From deep within, I hear a waterfall,
echo of myself, the way it empties

without fear of emptiness.
Perhaps he fears a flood.

I would hardly have capsized the car.
I would have let him keep his thunderbolt.

Instead, he disgorges me at the rest stop 300 miles north
where I totter in the sunlight, parched,
and wonder where we’ve been.