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Elizabeth Carsyn Jul 2021
Who cleans the killed from the road?
Who takes the broken and buries them?
Who stops the traffic? They’re not always around.
The skunk is nothing more than a dark spot
Along the intersection before the interstate.
I watched it wither away over three months
Each day becoming less recognizable
Each day sinking lower into the ground
I think the tuff of its tail snapped off
And rolled down the *****, into more traffic.
Where were they? Why was this one not moved?
When I am run over will you scrape me from asphalt
Or leave me to bake in the summer sun
Until I am as nothing as now, true nothing,
Flattened and forgotten and forsaken?
Elizabeth Carsyn Jul 2021
Love doubled is desire
desire doubled is madness
here i am with my chest aflame
ears full of saltwater, eyes
only see one thing upon rest
blue eyes, freezer burn, black
crystals chipping away at my nails
i want nothing more than your touch
but the river is between us
and we are both chained by pain
invisible and sharp and lonely
i am ready, i desire, that which
does not want me, a feeling
strange and ill-fitting
Elizabeth Carsyn Jul 2021
The fastest way from point a to b is a straight line
but the blue line on the gps is never straight --
i got lost in the steel city once with a dead phone
and no gps to get me home
i had to do it the old fashion way
reading and listening
until it started to look familiar
until it didn’t feel so lonely
i got lost in the steel city once
not a single soul around
save for the sound of cars and sirens and trains
i thought leaving the city was bringing me closer to b
i thought leaving would be less lonely
but the thing about loneliness is that it never goes away
it just changes shapes.
Elizabeth Carsyn Feb 2019
Bumblebees swarm under
The orange rind, bedside
Lamp flits, claws clench
A steering wheel, speeding.
Almost there, almost home,
You’re so close to finally
Understanding, almost.
Elizabeth Carsyn Oct 2018
Burning crown of golden glory, crusade
Cascade down my corpse like water, toppling
Wobbling pillar legs, eroding away

Cliché shoulder chips. Scorch scarf this thin skin
Therein a conversion of faith. Baptized
Eyes, lashless from rapid oxidation,

Imagination draught, greyscale landscapes,
Escape the reaction zone, relapse in
Collapsed dead space. Swallow the prophet whole.

Cajole the gut advice, heed it to heart.
Hot bleached skin, remnant of fever, frail ash
Dashed in the heavy summer breeze, tumble

Crumble under fingers, over myself.
Sulfur-lined lips ignite epiphanies,
Key-locked doors welded shut now ashy piles.

Smile of a statue spilt on veneer
Near the window. Husked corpse of cheap incense,
Scents of lavender, meekly melt away.

Ashtray of a grave, taste the bitter burn
Return again to bury my mortal.
Laurel on the pyre, you sing the hymn,

Swim within thin chapters of a dead flame,
Claim the blame of scorch scars and disappear.
Hear the fire eat. Smell its heat. Consume

Perfume of a personal breed, discard
Charred temple walls. This body, like incense,
Thence an ashen husk, molder from my touch.
Elizabeth Carsyn Mar 2018
I haven’t moved since the first time you kissed me.
Your lips drip laughter onto my chapstick,
filling the space between my teeth,
moving over my esophagus, slowly —
burning beneath my ribs.
This sweet warm wax, honey in my veins,
bubbling, hardening in my lungs —
squeezing the slightest sound of surprise, surrender,
from my diaphragm and I give myself,
relaxing in your arms,
to this feeling in my molten stomach.
My skin stiffens, my eyes glaze, my lips frozen
somewhere between a smile and a pucker.
Stuck in this split second, gazing at you,
encased in amber.
Elizabeth Carsyn Mar 2018
Blue as sapphire
groaning, shaking,
rumbling like thunder
burning my thigh tops
through the blanket.
The screen is dull,
flickering, buffering —

force shut down
the sound of Windows
reopening, singing —

log in again, eight taps
on the sticky keyboard,
reopen the YouTube tab
begin another vine compilation.
The screen is dull,
flickering, buffering —

force shut down
the sound of Windows
reopening, singing —

log in again,
sadistic taps on the keyboard,
open Dragon Age,
watch the title screen
flicker, buffer, freeze —

force shut down
the sound of Windows,
loud, lodging in my head —

log in again, first four furious,
the following: apologetic,
reopen Dragon Age,
slay an ogre,
freeze, sword raised
prepared for the final blow —

force shut down
Windows singing,
its melody, four beats long,
like a taunt or a tease —
log in, frantic eight taps, enter,
open Dragon Age.
I didn’t get the chance to save.
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