i haven't forgottentell me, boywho is your god.do not say itis the limbsthat spread youbetween knowingand comfort;do not tell me it ishands wrapping a headboard, nor a mouthtugging your namefor salvation.i want to know who it isthat makes you lucent,bent beneath the dark,weeping,because there is no divinitylike the one that makesyou bleed
fidelic whore-- this is appropriationmy sweet synchronicity ,i have downed your appetitein a bed of front teeth (it is morning in perthmidnight in dublin, and the noonsun has been lost behinda dress of mothy curtains)do i taste ofyour forethought of love making;do i reek ofthe weeds that have infiltratedthe posture of your spine?-you bend overmy lap a curve of guiltand weep all night.i collect each knob of your bodylike a gift. press it to my mouth.swallow, spit.
i and youwho is it thatyou dream of?is it mewith the knife in your back;do you see methe woman witha wolf jawcut slack in a growl?do i pounce you?do you defeat mewith the knifei gave you?and i wonder the soundof me when you finally put your demonto rest--she is a venus(her body cut fromthe ivory tusk with hips like that of a valley, breasts shaped astwo moons caught inher breath)and i am the trapshe slips into.i cut her headinto a loop land wear her round my necklike lace.
thankheaven for books,and mulatto boys thatbreak my heart; thank god for vodka andthank god for urges that slither into deep throatspast better judgement and thank god for his handsthat he lovedme with
thuggish loverno more on love. tell meinstead of the hearts you'vebeaten, and the way they kept onthrobbing
note 59burning it was somuch better thanletting it burn me
a poem for your poetryin you, find:repetition,cut lines,dash-and-enjambment;a woeof honesty wringingthe strength fromemotion:toward the end,destroyed.
on being savedi am sorry youhave never known salvationfrom another's touch
KATRINALIVES A MILEfrom the sea.she is sallow as a beach.she smells like rain,or a wet earth,with pale hair clippedbehind her headwith pins.she feels as though her hairwould be black. but it isbrown, sometimesand sometimesit is colorlessblonde.KATRINAGIVES MY STOMACHa fight.she doesn't speak.she is silence.i speak at her, mostlyand her eyeslook as thoughthey've been pluckedfrom a lynxto replaceher own.they are blue around the edgesthe deep blue you findat the edge of the sea,if you've been out that far.at the center they are greenlight like a riptide.they tug you in.unmoving, and calculatingwith audacity.KATRINAi said to someone once,gave me head.she didn't.her hands are too far duginto the coast of spainfor her to reach me,far too eagerfor my composure.she'd suck me drylike her mothers didthe caspian sea,like the fields of saharaonce lush with green.she is a barefoot girl.she moans like the shorefrontin the dead of night.i've made love to
interlopershow me god the way your motherknew him, show me the mark onyour body where he stoppedyou from suicide, where he changedyour winters to summers andback again.address me by my first name to showme that your respect for me hasn'tdied, letter by letter, buried betweenthe bow of your hips alongside ouronce-strong playground love.tell me the preacher was lying as hespoke of our comely desire falling tothe destructive hand of a deity no onehas ever seen, but feels as they speakin tongues that never matched the ones ispoke in to finally tell you thati felt for you.don't leave me in some drunken tantrumacross state lines, slurring words asyou try to tell me your love for someoneelse is vivid and living in you, even in theparts that have died away, breathing outalcohol as you use the word "never".curl into me with intimacy, touching the sadnessout of me, because i always wanted to bethe one you love, not the one you loved.
tapdances on our brittle bonesif it's fifth hour and there's a cadaver in the classroom,it's because i'm carving your initials in my right carpus;or perhaps it's because we're investigating human skulls,but yours is the only one i'd like to play detective with(i'd donate my skeleton to youhad you not already owned it)(i'll use parenthesesas if they're oxygen)but not punctuationor lowercase lettersor irony because i'vewatched too much tvwithout you or senseor an attention span,and i will write poetry in the form ofsliced wrists and broken wishes, ofhacked kneecaps andhackneyed caps lock:I WILL SCREAM AT THE STARSAS IF I DISCOVERED THE SKY;I WILL YELL FROM MY LUNGS,AS IF I INVENTED BREATHINGMY VOCAL CORDS WILL EXPLODEAS IF I'M THE FIRST ONE TO YELL,and i will whisper with my tongueas if i still owned full custody of it.(and enter more parenthesesbecause you're breathtaking;i'm breathless and in need ofyour/my/our twisted oxygen)O+Mg => U+Ibut chemistry reactions don't helpwhen m
spider song, purple ladyshe carrieda pair of scissorsin her purse so she couldcut the filter off her cigarettebefore she smoked it.she sucked in hercheeks and pursed herlips when she had to bepatient for anything.'how do youstay so thin?' i askedshe gathered her braceletsat her wrists and they clinkedlike wine glasses, like the twinkleof her smile, 'cigarettes and ritalin,'she said. 'a steady diet of cigarettes and ritalin.'she had smallhands that were notfeminine. her fingerswere short and her palmswere wide.everything abouther was purple. evenher eyes. they were brown.she didn't wearlipstick. only gloss.stinking, pink, and sticky.don't go too near, you'll endup with your lips stuck and thenshe'll eat you. you'll love it.i asked whyshe didn't justcut the filters offall at once, all at onceat home and she said, 'honeyit's wednesday, and i've barelymade it past monday yet.' snip,flick, fzzz. alright, i said, you knowyou're one hell of a girl and you'realright, i said.
virginity is like an envelopemy mother said her mother knew.i wonder if she stumbled home like i did,fifteen and beer-loosetied to the door like a thunderstorm with black lipsand i wrote a story about disaster,a quiet two sleds long.a box full of beads, i swallowedfifteen needles, mommy. don’ttell me i’m not sorry.don’t call me a whore you bag of bonesyou lock-loose suitcase do you evenrecognize me look at my face my toothache skini am not the one with the knife.my mother never slept with a boywho didn’t love her never let a boysleep on her while she lay awake beneaththe shroud of his skin breathing onlywhen her voice-box gathered too much dust.you have to know i didn’t doit on purpose. he slid beers down my throattill i felt like a landfill.i was not yet a crescendo. maybe i was a polka-dot.you couldn’t tell. i got homewith my legs full of nightmare.the doctor said xanax.i said i am a ruin like the oneswe saw in peru.a balloon in a funeral poem.
a casual i love you1.a note reads: i love you.so, i call you smilingani love you, too.your phone rings. he stops.the phone stops. youstart, unclothed on top.2.you wait, watching tv,to tell me.
morningssunday.the croissant crumbles in my fingersbuttery flakes drift towards mismatchedchinaand your lips are stained withstrawberry jam.monday.sleep clings to your eyeslike a shadowand i watch you breathe, whilei trace your collarbone withtired fingers.tuesday.we wake before the alarmand count how many times theneighbor's dog barksbefore she finally lets him in.your soft laugh blends perfectly intothe early morning sun.wednesday.your fingers trace the curveof my spinethe old window rattlesin the windand i press my cold toes against your leg.thursday.half asleepi mumble how the faded, flowery wallpaperlooks pretty in the sun.you tell me i look prettier.friday.i tickle your cheek with my eyelashesand make my fingers doski jumpsoff your noseand wonder out loud whythe room smells like oranges[you tell me you ate some for a midnight snack.]saturday.linen
Witches MarketMidnight fell like an old black bird;I meant to wait for you.There were tables rich withamethyst and pearls,and fragrance by the fistful,mint and petrichor.I meant to wait for you.You were gliding through the hazewith your knotted bag half full-shadows flicked their tonguesabove your knees;you meant to look for me.Moments ran like mice;a silver pot, a cup of tea.She stank of vinegar and thyme-the hand was hers, the heart was mine.Her iron eyes reflected flame;she took my lungs, she took my name,though you had meant to look for me,and I had to meant to wait for youamid the black salt and the brew.Ash for the handle,Birch for the brush,Willow for the cord that binds the twigs.
yes, all womenmonths or yearsfrom now my therapistwill click her pen atme in the static humof her silent office,perhaps before poppingthe question so manyothers have before:why haven't yougotten over it?if it's hard tounderstand why theshortest relationshipi've undergone hasscarred my skin andnearly taken my life,then i'll explain.i am not over itbecause panic attacksrattle me when i seemy abuser's face -in person or in memories.i am not over itbecause a tank top andshort-shorts does not,under any circumstances,mean "yes", and neitherdoes his teeth on my neckor the silence betweenthe two of us.i am not over itbecause i was ridiculedand rumored to be a slutbecause his handsdecided i was.i am not over itbecause i still getprank calls from privatenumbers and nightmaresshake my fitfullysleepless nights.i am not over itbecause i am scared tocross the street to work,and i have beenharassed more timesthan i have fingersby men with the same eyesas my ab
tremblingmaybe i should askyou for a lifetime,she said withher palms dangling,neck dangling, toestipping over themselveslike she was the pervasiveproduct of a sad, crumpledpuppeteer.maybe i should askyou for, at least,a summertime, she said,this time circling withblack, slick, meteorsfor eyes. i didn't care-supernova or end of theworld, i'd tear myselfapart just to be ather center. i'dvolatize myself,blue blood runningthin- i'd destroymyself.maybe i should askyou for my name back.maybe i should askyou for some space.maybe i should askyou for some fuckingcompany when i'm aloneand i can't faceanyone else. maybei should introduceyou to my mother.maybe i should peelyour skin and blow your cover.maybe i shouldask youfor alifetime, she said.i'd give it,oh man, would i give it.
slippers your ghost eats peanut butter out of the jar. an atomic grease fire tongues our oven like an aneurysm. if only we walked on clouds if only we lived in the belly of the ocean
And There Was Lighti.He was seventeen when he died.I never went to the funeralbut I walked past it the day ofthe service. His motherwas in the backseat of a blue Dodge,door open, head in her hands."My baby," she kept repeating."My baby." It would go from sobbing, toscreaming, to a soft whisper thatI could only hear being carriedon the wind.ii.It was a Wednesday afternoon that they foundhis old red pickup truck parkedout front of Slim's, two beer bottles inthe back and the windows cracked to let the staleair out.I heard that his dad told the police he wasgonna take that old truck and fix it up, becausehe had promised his son before—because it's always in the before—he died.And in the after, his mother never had dry eyesand I'm pretty sure my mom told methat she saw his dad at the bar every night,drinking his sorrows down because some people can'thandle the stress.Some people can't figure out why their son wouldkill himself.iii."Some men just want to w
literally, a quesadilla more than you will ever understand, you smell like an impressionist painting. cigarettes, new car, shirt stuck to skin. laughing: I wonder what would happen if we fucked right here, sacriligiously. no nerves, just confidently lacing the space between planets with electric light
some things you have to figure out yourselfsleep is creeping pasttwo holes in heavy eyesrips my mind from my thoughts,the muddy rib from my sideyou in the aisle of wal-martwriting Jesus underpretense of a hallmark card"what's a stone without a sinner,a sin without a stoner?"the life-longquestion: which is worse-the need or the donor?because we, unequivocally,have excelled at ripping allof the fruit from all of thetrees. your eyes are open,they are viewing, but theydo not seeand do you seewhat i mean? do youeven see meat all?three hits.a snip, a crush, two sniffs-i need you, i need thisyou are beautiful and i am hungry,but i can't take what you won't give.(the need and the donor)and-which is worse:the deliberate lie or the Judas kiss?i am starting to understandthat i can't haveit all.i love you, standing strong andstanding tall, but how muchdo i love you if icurse you when youfall?we have been conquerors of everything,and keepers of nothing.don't you
Otherwise Good ConditionI have worn the same dressfor four days, becauseI am sick, exquisitelysick --black and gold, your drunkdimestore Nefertiti. Awhite stain announcesitself, a muddy star:she coughedhere. Undo yourself,those sallow words you drink,let the silk fall loose. I've gota face like dirty laundryand burial grounds --What I touch becomesunwell. I wear my hairlike it pains me,blow kisseslike a little girlsucking her teethat cars, the caked littletombs of sugar that crumble,nakedunder the hot milkof the sun.
on the afterlifethere was a heaven, once,and it was made of grass andthe ground that crawled under itopened up wider than your mouth andate me.i saw mountains: i sawbeauty, it was a roughinverted fountain. i sawJesus. he said 'deathis The Promise, and The Promisenever leaves us.' i sawdiamonds, and i saw coalstoo it just took a whileto find them. i sawlucifer. he was sewingme a nightgown made ofsoft liquor slurs. i sawmy brain. it told me'thanks for the x, notso much the cocaine.' i sawmy skin strung out to dryafter a long summer rain. i sawmy bones become the frameof a house beside a lake. i sawmy tongue cradle babies andtell them, 'the sleep is worththe wake.' i saw a mirror madeof big blue tears. it said,'the shit was worth the wait.'
wholenessi climb inside not womanand make a place therefor myselfi throw away the spacethat does not fitand take onenever offered:i am as much a girlas a mountaini am as much a boyas the seai am the soundof unborn voiceand swollen tonguei am the soundthat the word home makeswhen i thinkbut do not speak
flora tourbilloni.the wild parts of meare falling;dandelion driftwaters,wind-borne andwinding a circuitouspath to theground.ii.i am etched patchworkwallflowers,a fantasia offorget-me-notblooms (but oh,how your gazepasses me over)iii.and you'd never dreammy words wereyours,but you hauntmy midnightsjust the same.iv.the empty parts of meare filling,chrysanthemum sincerityseeping throughdaylight,and i create myselfover and overin the spacesyou left.
dreams from the strawberry cityi woke up with the word prozac on my lips.aaaand i dreamt of london again and thecity was swollen and the lights were red, trafficclutter and cinnabar bus shelter redi thought i heard a train smashing but it was only newspapers soaking upthe nocturnal tempo of some underground night clubsome state of the art sound system, oh so modern oh so let's pretendto be an orchestra, hang cables from plastic pronounces,
how to healthey say honeyto soften the wound, but i let the woolwet with ethanolgnawuntil i amweeping,again, and again,and again