Jody Azzouni


Losing My Marbles

Originally published in The Hollins Critic, June 1988
Added 5/19/2021
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Losing My Marbles

Poem | Jody's Notes


Traditionally their shape impresses,

but I didn’t notice it.


Nor did the opaque ones interest me

despite the press mystery gets.


Instead I loved the sterile flowers,

the clouds never spent in precipitation,

and the cat’s eyes that no animal ever used

to see prey.


I don’t know what I was thinking of

When I threw one against the concrete.

The stickyfingered autopsy revealed

only broken glass, some of it colored.


The magic isn’t in the form but the substance.

I knew this only after I saw a prism splinter

dull light, my face trapped in glass

behind a mirror, and Christmas tree lights

twinkling like neurons chatting.


I haven’t entirely lost touch

with the miniature worlds.

For example, I always watch the eyes

when I’m bargaining. I play pool, visit

fortunetellers regularly, guard the family jewels,

and yes, play the occasional game of Jacks

with the kids.

Keep everything in perspective, I always say.


But then again, there are those mornings

when I look in the mirror and my face splinters

as if Picasso is God. Then I think of statues,

and the hard tears they sometimes shed.