Nothing’s left. I learn the bad news over good merlot
and unremarkable dinner, fraught with pieces of shell and cavernous want:

the muse has quit. Up and left with no trace,
a body turned away, a disappointed lover’s back, at night.

No longer hungry, I feed crumbs to magpies who skip, peck, sample
what shines, what glitters, what reflects. They’d rather eat the sun.

Consider fight or flight: in the kitchen, you knock dishes in the sink
until something breaks. Eggs shattered in tonight’s omelet, us still not full.

How can I hunger for this? Even the bread grows hollow, yeast over-risen,
bubbling into empty spaces. No food assembles here.

Crumbs dry in my mouth. I taste the stale-
mate. Black birds no longer sing. The wine is gone.

Alisa Gordaneer is from Victoria, BC, where she writes poetry and nonfiction. She teaches writing of all sorts, and contributes a monthly column about the arts to Boulevard. She's won many awards for both her poetry and journalism from the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation, the Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Foundation, and the Association of Alternative Newsweeklies. Her work has appeared in various journals including The Malahat Review, Grain, The Christian Science Monitor, and Alimentum.