the world within the world within you by Manahil Bandukwala

Poem name: the world within the world within you Poet name: Manahil Bandukwala Poem begins: “There are worlds between my toes. I am a bear.” — A bear (@A_single_bear)   there are worlds within the worlds  within you   each world spores its own fungi  the forest hidden in your ear canal is spongy  all the leaves fire-like all the dried up streams all the little chipmunks ferrying acorns across your helix  press your right ear to a pillow  your worlds sleep when you sleep to the distant rumble of an  always-shaking earth  the garden in your hip crease is damp from autumn rain  i try to tread carefully but  there are so many mushrooms  each one reaping the harvest of early spring  there are worlds that rise with you  each day  while others exist only  between moments  the moments where you scrunch up your shoulder blades creates the inner curve of a waterfall basin down to your tailbone  i swim in the pool under mist the nudge of each breaststroke  the light airiness of a kiss  End of Poem.  Credits: Copyright © Manahil Bandukwala Previously published in Moss Puppy Magazine, 2021 Manahil Bandukwala is a writer & visual artist. She is currently Coordinating Editor for Arc Poetry Magazine & Digital Content Editor for Canthius. She is a member of Ottawa-based writing collective VII. Her collaborative chapbook with Conyer Clayton, Sprawl | the time it took us to forget (Collusion, 2020) was shortlisted for the bpNichol Award. Her debut poetry collection is MONUMENT (Brick Books, 2022).