Mood Swings

 Erica Funkhouser


When criticized, she craves butter.

When praised, salt.

Sadness calls for inadequate outerwear.

Exhilaration for ultra violet.

All feelings are unhealthy.

For solitude, driving too fast.

For lack of solitude, Scotch.

Money, success and attention cure everything.

Money, success and attention make no difference at all.

Open the window on trouble.

Close the window on luck.

Baseball statistics to ease boredom.

The botanical names of plants to prevent vanity.

If uncertain, dive into freezing water.

If empty, climb clouds.

There's nothing she hasn't tried.

Lacking speech, she pierced her tongue.

Lacking sleep, she invited stones into her body.

A precipice when enamored.

A coil when confident.

Some days one mood is enough to chase away another:

stubbornness beats back fury beats gratified beats silly.

She has used pitiful to subdue commanding

and austere to embarrass sweet.

Two moods of equal experience

will stare each other down until one blinks.

She has heard pride sniffling in its sleeve

and willingness cursing its place at the table.

Others are always arriving, in and out,

like a bat, like a bandit, like a break in the current.

Change to remedy poison. Poison to remedy thirst.

Thirst to remedy simplification. Poor simplification—

that one never survives its own arrival.