Divagation by Devon Balwit

The day collages unlikely fragments: the protest
and the pub, basketball and line breaks. I run

the dog for the thousandth time over the same field,
then read about Sri Lanka, where I have never stepped.

At the protest, both sides turn their cameras on the other,
documenting strangeness: this a union member, this

an anarchist, this a person of color, this a lesbian, this
a member of the alt-right. Even the police have cameras out,

or especially. Later, in the feed, the images jumble: animal
memes and cartoons, fake news and honest witness, opposition

interspersed with ads, all curated by clever algorithm.
For a moment, I blush at posting the day’s riot police next to

the NBA finals, then own it, never fueled by a single impulse.
Even the pub is Janus-faced, squatting on gentrified land

and overcharging, yet donating all its profit to charity.
By nightfall, I am the same, yet not—Theseus’ ship.

I tie my hull of scraps fast to the bollard and lay my head
on the pillow. Come morning, I will once again divagate.

Devon Balwit is the author of five chapbooks. Her poems can be found in many places, such as Poets Reading the News, The NewVerse News, Rattle, Rise Up Review, Rising Phoenix Review, The Fem, Non-Binary Review, and more.



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