String and Rope
One always looks to be
a crinkled number one.
The other seems 
a disheveled zero.
One loops around a finger
to leash you to an idea.
The other knots so you
can drag dead weight.
One settles in a pleasant curl,
a snippet of Rameau.
The other bristles coarse
as the hair in Beethoven’s deaf ear.
One ties a present
neat and tidy.
The other keeps your hands
behind your back.


Mark Cunningham