by Elizabeth Derby

A word sometimes
Sits round on my tongue
Deciding whether to roll out
Or just race back into
The dark recesses of my throat.

I like the feel of the sphere,
Smooth and hard,
And try to keep it
Poised on the soft warmth
Of its precarious perch.

But it rotates,
Not sure of anything
Other than
It won’t be staying
Where it is,
That place of comfort to me.

And while I am pondering
Its shape and size,
I hope it is just
A random thought word
For myself alone
And not part of a conversation with another.

I mean, really,
What would you think
Of someone
Mouthing a rock of a word,
Tasting it,
And not spitting it out
Into the flow?