Frankenstein’s Lament
Brandon L. Brown

When will my funny choice malfunction?
I often wonder
creeping through these catacombs
by candlelight,
revisiting these familiar
old bones
wrapped in the sticky
paraffin of time.

I’ve read all the books—
or most of them, anyway
about how to create
a complete life.
I sat alone in my room
comforted by the bubbling
of beakers, the skittering
of rats.

You left me bread and wine
on the table
while dressed like a robber
I combed over graves
for moldy old hands,
a newly dead heart
and a mind like mine
for calculation.

The stitches are so ugly!
A pale green patchwork quilt
with a face, a horrible face—
with eyes as dead as
all my yesterdays,
and your mouth
a hole for maggots
instead of Goethe.

In my mind we danced,
but you bumble.
In my dreams you shone
humble scarecrow,
now I just want you buried.
What name would I put
on your stone?
No words justify you.

Yes, I wonder when that
which still makes you stoop
to smell tulips
will crust black and cold
like an old wick
and you decide it
feels better
to crush them.