Self-Portrait in an Exercise Ball

by Devin Becker

Probably some Gym employee has to make this type of portrait every morning but today my

            blowing up this black sphere by pumping air through this pump feels lyrical, absurdly, as

            the exercise ball grows from flat material into a sphere mirroring the yellow room perfectly

            coherently, but smaller, rounded, blurred and skewed, and, since I’ve been learning (on the

            job) about how one never really escapes one’s self, the ball’s sinister reflection seems

            possessed of; a Hallelujah-quality.

                  Then there was this middle part of the inflation when the sphere hadn’t yet asserted

itself and the ball looked like a withered plum.

                  Forgive me, Reader, but isn’t that how you, too, have felt?

I almost asked you if I ever told you about what I said to myself at age 4 about health, how I said to

            myself, Devin, you should be happy you are so rarely ill, but then I remembered I’ve never told

            you anything before so here’s another: in a similar vein, I once told my father (on his

            birthday) he should be happy since he had me, my mother, and my brother, to which he said

            You don’t know much about happiness, as though it were something

            awful to have learned, which it is (it was).

Myself? my hair is clean.
I’m wearing a cut-off tee shirt I’ve had since I was 12.
I live in Bloomington where it’s hot and everyone is moving.

     Dear Reader,

      Sorrow is in fashion here-the trees breathe out the shade they make-

      and I find it nice, to finally be an expert at something.

      I sit in the kitchen. I make a night of the sun.