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Sol LeWitt detail at MassMOCA, 2011 (image via Benjamin Kabak on Flickr)

Inchworm at Embarcadero

Where the system map’s

metal edge abuts

a fuzzed pink scalp,

an inchworm doubles back,

polite but unrepentant

in sounding the pent-up

space–hides half itself

like an em dash scrunching

to a solemn hyphen,

or a gymnast, all arm

between invisible rings,

or a pawn condemned

to the same two moves,

creative though short-lived,

or the steely tip

on the tuning fork

of a sonometer, twitching,

poised to decipher

the immiserated quiet

that descends (for some

more than others)

when we hit the Transbay

Tube, jolted closer together,

heads worlds away.

*   *   *

Nate Klug is the author of Rude Woods, a modern translation of Virgil’s Eclogues, and Anyone, a book of poems. He works as a Congregationalist minister and lives in California.

Wendy Xu

Wendy Xu is the author of the poetry collections Phrasis (Fence, 2017), winner of the 2016 Ottoline Prize, and You Are Not Dead (Cleveland State University Poetry Center, 2013). The recipient...