You See Everything Starts With Dust – by MORGAN TOWNES

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You See Everything Starts With Dust




Fourteen months ago

you were naked – except

for one sock and your crooked

glasses – lying with me

on a musty mattress –

the bridge of my nose

in the crook of your neck.

I could feel your eyes glazing

over as you muttered wildly:

What is life? Why is

time? Who is God? When

Is love? Where is hell?

We wove a constellation of

mysteries across entangled

limbs, heavy breasts,

pungent feet, calloused

hands, sour tongue until

your fiery breath found my ear,

filling it with hot talk for answers:

You see, everything starts with dust. You and I, we, us – we started with dust.

The dust- the teensy things- they blow away into the soil, the sea, into the air

that we breathe. The dust – those particles – are dispersed over farmland,

over sand in the desert, are dissolved into the Yangtze, the Rhine, the Red Sea,

the pond in Iowa. They are inhaled through nostrils of oxen, of wolves, of your brother.

Each particle has its moment where it matters most – maybe for one thousand years

or maybe for a split second. Not in the long and complicated scheme of things

(things being the universe for all eternity). The soil and sand are blown away, the

oceans dry up, the rivers dry up. The oxen, the wolf, your brother – they die.

Dust. Particles. Recycling always.

So are we. So is the synchronization of our hearts’ rhythmic beat. During its season,

it burns bright and wild. But it will be dried up, blown away, or dead before too long.

Fire begets dust and there is a truth we don’t want to admit: dust we will remain.







Morgan Townes writes poetry and fiction in the beautiful Portland, Oregon. She is originally from the Appalachian Mountains in Virginia, where a piece of her heart still dwells. When not writing, she can be found in a coffee shop with a good book or hiking in the Pacific Northwest. 

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