Lesa Williams

Chaos Theory and Practice

Tornadoes populate my dreams
like blue moons.

Silk-stocking cyclones in Depression-era Kansas
make personal appearances,

force-five twisters, God’s middle finger.
They steal the lipstick-red Corvette

I drove off the lot ten minutes earlier
and keep it.  They hold doors closed,

destroy my home, its window glass transfigured
into hail, cave in old and fragile rooftops

while I cower belowstairs
with my grandfather, dead for years.

Babylonian Pazuzu is the wind,
no Exorcist demon but warder-off of sickness.

Listen:  Pa-zu-zu.  The sound of wind.
In Santeria the wind is Oya,

orisha of the cemeteries,
goddess of air and thunderbolts.

Even disbelievers are children
of violence.  I think she is my mother.

Her power spiraled, stealing
my poems in anger, in lieu

of blood offerings.  I do not sacrifice
to her and she makes clear

the price in dreams, in films,
raging at me in every storm.


Lesa Williams is a poet in Carbondale, Illinois.
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    Ernest O. Ògúnyẹmí