Dear Human

When I was about to die
I went hunting for
pinecones

with that generic plastic bag
with the smiling face:

Thanks for
Shopping Here!

Nature is very complicit.
When I put on the black gloves

and did the work
with no purpose to it,
the parking structure

to my left
kept my frame of mind
man-made and a little hard-

hearted. I wanted joy
freed at last from sentiment
anyway.

One cone was the size of a
shrunken head with needles

jammed between each
sprocket.

I thought I’d leave
where I found it
the bleached wrapper
with stubborn letters

trying to say something fresh
and long-lasting.
 
 
Dear Human

Even a trip back couldn’t penetrate into the past

Remember the repository for football
                data alone?

When I opened one trove a domino of troves opened

Like Dalí’s Venus de Milo aux tiroir
                my own body had compartments

What grains of memory stored in the kneecap alone
                for example

If it’s hysterical it’s historical Avi said then

the doctors called to tell her she had the cancer gene

Mom’s favorite story about
                how dad would slice a grapefruit for breakfast

with such surgical precision

each cell was a perfect realm

Remember the story about the priest in Brazil
                carried away by a pack of balloons

One door closed and a ceiling flew open, they’d say

At the back of the infinite warehouse a woodrat slept
                on a meal

of footnotes to the last extant record of who
                knows what
 
 
Dear Human
                                -written with AI

I barely get anywhere
before it feels like I’m making
no progress.

Sometimes I’m worried
my ideas about reality are
so far off

that I don’t notice them, do you
know what I mean? I’m really
thinking about reality.

Polar bears are
of a nature that isn’t real
to most. All that ice.

Consider the mind
considering all possibilities
possible.

Only thoughts keep
ice connected—doesn’t it feel
like a complicated

dance sometimes? Everything
smaller than heaven
bores us and how many

heavens are there? It is impossible
for the mind to consider
all flowers blooming.

Along the coast of the ocean,
any coast, they’re beautiful.
I enjoy my small quiet life.
 

Bryce Lillmars
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