Gala and the Tigers

by Theadora Siranian

after a dream of Dalí


All the airplanes are disappearing.
With their thin seats and bright engine lights

they take off

into the wood chipper grinding
away outside my bedroom window.

7 AM and I lie in bed
and listen to them go.

Something is not one thing but an unwinding
set of lines tracing a perpetual lack of comfort.


Something is the sweater snagged,
what people avoid calling the eventual,

the world growing smaller as it grows larger.

The silence of those back bedroom days

becoming less violent
but more threatening.

All those notes taped
to the kitchen cupboards
no longer encoded,

the weather of broken ribs and genetic discontent
now formulas

for sadness and grocery lists,
almanacs for snowfall and heat.

A room built of acid and honey, an iron cage strewn with irises:

Watching someone mad grow old.


Give me an intact airplane.
Make me six years old and set me by the window
to watch clouds turn to skyscrapers.

The waves look like wounds
from 17,000 feet,
sinew of salt and motion.

Watch me walk the airports alone.

A dinosaur lives inside Chicago.

Everyone knows this.


In the dream it’s morning and I find her.

Seventeen floors down,
naked, a giant stretched out in the parking lot.

The tigers are gone,
her skin shredded, her body
finally void of complexities.

Death like a series of potholes,
the body, this moment,

just another in a long collection
of artifacts missing their middleground,

and here, see: a pomegranate
sliced open in the palm of my hand.


Gala-and-the-Tigers_Siranian_Photo_lgeTheadora Siranian is an MFA Poetry candidate at the University of Massachusetts, Boston. She has had poems appear in Gigantic Sequins, mojo, elimae, and DIAGRAM. In 2007 she received the Academy of American Poets Prize from Emerson College, and was selected for inclusion in the Best New Poets 2012 anthology series.

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