How they’re noisy, how they’re swinging, how the zoo is a wild place

– from “A Poem About Monkeys” by Corey Mesler

How there is so much
color, so much
metal and wood
at the playground,

at the park, how there are
all those happy
sounds lingering
around bolted tires,

how you can hear them,
even now,
when you are
the only ones,

but the wildness
stays behind,
as if it were
a skin shed

on the cool red
tangle of bars,
as if someone designed them
for just such a thing,

as if someone
even after our moving on,
our long

evolution, we still need
a place
where all that
needs to be said

is found in a language
without words,
spoken by swinging

by arms and legs
let loose,
as if only then
we can let go

of what makes
no sense,
as if only
in “this untamed place”

can we, at least,
shake free
our minds, like now,
with her

by her knees,
as if she instinctively

how to turn the world
right-side up,
in all her wildness

until that sad skin
comes off,
left to curl
at the base

of a blue
swirly slide.