The Rain Stage

O.G. Rose
2 min readJun 5, 2024


A Poem by O.G. Rose

Photo by Caroline Grondin

It is the age before mirrors and glass
can shatter. A pterodactyl flaps boney-wings
and shrieks over your head, a time-traveler,
someone who has not learned how to leave for a hunt
and not come back older.

The sun has not risen, only shared its light
with a dim sky, which shares day
with you, at the rocky base of a volcano
you lack the word “dead” to describe
inaccurately. It is early, before the world
has found you, that dark hour when you

In the light, you rub your eye. It tortures,
forcing you to see the nude wife
of the tribe’s strongest, a life-desire you want that possessing
will make it appear elsewhere — “whack a mole,” you’d mutter
if you were born centuries later in an age of childhood —
in charred meat or a smooth rock
or finger-nail.

You could pull out an eye,
hope only the wife’s disfigured legs and torso would tempt you,
for losing both eyes will assure starvation,
but your eyes cannot see everything, at least:
only your everything can torture.

You are the sum of things
that do not add together — chest hairs,
itchy skin, seven fingers, broken knees —
created by the Great Thing in your head to believe
they do, that two and two
make you.

It starts to rain, in the gray dawn, and you sit down
by an indention in the cracked earth,
and wonder why you could not smell well enough
to survive blind. You wonder this, thinking as hard as you can,
and the indention fills up.

The word “glass” is an alien vessel from the future —
and mirrors could be eyes if they were still
on you. You do not move and watch
the hole vanish; the rain-ripples.

The drizzle stops when the sun is in the trees,
and you hear female members of your tribe
soothing babies and calling for help, and you feel
you should go
when you see someone in the water,
open like a book, but the possibility of literacy
is only just starting —
the fragility.

You are not you
looking back.

You will never again be in the moment
where you could believe you were elsewhere,
that your name was always directed to bind something
beyond you, and you will not live long enough
to meet a Christ of new birth
who tells you that, for salvation, all false unities
must go, and you never ask
a question.

Can the never-born




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O.G. Rose

Iowa. Broken Pencil. Allegory. Write Launch. Ponder. Pidgeonholes. W&M. Poydras. Toho. ellipsis. O:JA&L. West Trade. UNO. Pushcart.