Mitosis Grant Clauser

Mitosis Grant Clauser

When cells grow, they split,
when they split, they take up ballroom dancing
or go to restaurants they’ve walked by
but never dined in before. When cells split, they grab
everything they can from the apartment
and stuff it in the car.
In their haste to get away,
they leave their phone chargers
plugged in by the bedside table,
they leave their barely started Russian novel
in the pocket of their favorite leather jacket
but take the good champagne
left over from New Year’s.

And despite their surety that it was destined,
that deep in their mitochondrial dreams
they always knew this was their destiny,
they can’t help but drink themselves
into tumors, to wander aimlessly
through motels, kicking over
trash cans, smashing the coke machine,
then pass out pissing themselves
on the bed next to another cell
they just met,
because this is what cells do.
When they split, you know it
from the scars they weave across
each other’s bodies, from the lives
they leave cast off on the floor.

razor iconGrant Clauser lives in Pennsylvania and writes about electronics for a living. His books include Necessary Myths and The Trouble with Rivers. Poems have appeared in The American Poetry Review, The Literary Review, Painted Bride Quarterly, Cortland Review, Southern Poetry Review and others. He teaches writing occasionally, blogs at, and chases trout with a stick.

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