He sent us flowers without a card,
God did—that trickster soul.
It must have been a sound that started it all,
And he’s still out there somewhere, laughing
While we seek directions, or direction,
While we, the addressees, search for an addresser,
While we sort and sift and categorize and collect,
Divide, classify and analyze. Our refrigerators hum to us,
And heaven knows the bugs make their merry at night.
Once I even saw the color yellow hum
When I imagined van Gogh stroking its thick,
Vibrant passion onto the page.
That yellow song was anything but hum-drum.
I swear, I felt it on the roof of my mouth
And at the back of my throat
Like a yogic ritual or some sort of Tantric stunt.
Even deep in my chest, yes, I felt the hum.
And in the other room—the clothes in the washer,
Round and around they went, their own spinning universe,
And next to them, a parallel world, the dryer,
Connected to the same outlet,
Hum, hum, humming away.
This life is anything but ho-hum,
With all this motion and noise.
Hell, I can hardly even hear over the hum of my phone,
Which I have cursed for interference,
Which I have indignantly labeled, “that silver piece of shit,”
Which I have threatened to replace (like it cares),
And which was really Om all along.
Washing clothes, I’ve since learned, is an act of prayer.