Each morning he floats up
from his waterlogged deepdark dreams
and begins the day’s search for ballast.
He swallows the change on the bedside table,
then sucks the sweat from his damp pillow.
He tosses legs overboard like corpses,
drags anchor toes down the long hall
in search of heavy water.
His swampgas vapors curl the dusty air.
On sunny days he subsists in the cellar.
Swallows paint chips and dusty cobwebs.
Skin scraped like vellum, eyes dryer than salt.
Matthew Smart lives in a part of Michigan often overlooked by amateur cartographers. By day he works as an information technology analyst. In his evenings he writes poetry, fiction, and computer code. His writing has appeared in Vestal Review, Unbroken Journal, Litro Online, Smokelong Quarterly and elsewhere.