“After Van Gogh” By Noah Otten

Bigger than huge or supersize;
Smaller than forever or infinite.
Different than colossal, or vast.

Less British than “immense.”
It’s like, Americano, man.

“Once, when I was really hungry,” says Rob,
“I ate a hamburger that big.”

It’s where the aliens from the Glaxon Nebula
stash the battleships and jets they snatch out of the air.

It’s the dark cavern underneath the continent;
the wilderness that surrounds
the city where we plant our flag.

I feel it close when I make a statement at lunch
about economics or Tibet or something else
that I don’t know anything about.

When Kathleen is in her room for an hour and a half,
talking with her girlfriend on the phone,
I sometimes think she doesn’t love me anymore.

That fear connects
through an underground cave
with all the other fears.
It is large.

And then there is the sadness of orangutans.
You have no idea.

By Tony Hoagland