Let the light seep into your eye sockets,
your pores. Illuminate your hair
with a flash as bright as Vegas.
And you, the you that is not you, the inverse of you,
will be tacked on every cubicle wall
as a reminder of courage. "She took a chance," they'll say.
"Stuck her head into the jaws of the great machine."
(It terrifies all of us, its mysterious appetites and blinking impartations.)
Of course, you may simply be tossed
into the wastebasket, which gorges from 9 to 5
on a bleached coleslaw of trees.
Or recycled into a romance novel,
teeming with breathless heiresses and dark-eyed suitors,
your cracked lips and shadow hair barely recognizable.
In any case, you'll have felt the light in your veins.
For a moment, you'll have glowed like a saint.
Jessica Goodheart is an environmental researcher and labor activist.