Raymond Luczak is the author and editor of 22 books, including Flannelwood (Red Hen Press) and Lovejets: Queer Male Poets on 200 Years of Walt Whitman (Squares & Rebels). He lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
MY PUNCTURED EARDRUM
The eardrum, ten millimeters in size,
bottles the fizz of sound.
Our brains keep the champagne of music,
laughter and hints of swoon
bubbling happily under the cork.
Even though I was deaf, music still entered me:
cigarette smoke swirled past the neon
arms wrapped around the jukebox blaring
bass, drums, guitar, and a falsetto voice.
I was stretched tight, my heart beating back.
Centuries ago it was believed
that drilling into the skull of a possessed one
would allow the demon to escape
through the tiny bloodied hole.
Please, God, please free my demons.