the dark squeaks through,
sinks in the holes
in the lungs—the worms
found her too.
appendages of the hands
grown from the soil of old hysterias
to sate the browning mind,
the eyes no longer do.
in the caricature of her boots,
the prints left in frenzied twos
are auxiliary to the compounds
that do not do
anymore than the supercilious
breath she left above ground
when she was twenty-two—
latent now in a grave
where the light can’t produce,
but the heart still beats.
I'm a survivor of many things,
but I still don't understand
and what did you do those
three whole days
while that ship was under siege
and the thousands of my
nerves screamed at you--
Did you hold the anchor
close to that cross nailed to
I'd have been a different
kind of woman from the one
you left in me,
and if I wanted to be a
I'd have gone to a different corner
of a different street.
But that God of yours doesn't like me,
and if I can't have the sea in
your eyes I'll suffice with a fist
and live off the swelling.
the bones were hard to give up,
they pushed out like daisies
caressed under the hounding
heart of a copper sun.
unbridled and undried they bore
zealous arrogance of themselves,
petals dripping ****** convictions
and vibrating like awful angels.
under cruel devices they tried to
soften my bones and mold thick skull
constructed of lackluster candles
on their last flame.
days passed like doctors and white nurses
examining old wires that pray tell
the routines, the stools, the teeth.
i am their Jesus, their Lazarus.
my hearse, my sheep keeper,
my pretty things,
i become the acrobat at the
finale, the last supper,
supplementing at the **** of my
recovery. i lay my skin down for all
of you to see: here is my breast!
my toad belly! my glass feet!
dissonant from the ground that ached
fractured and mistress of
she birthed the thin ghost of dawn
drawing the trembling line of
fervent, the bulbous-born sky
in fat drunken clouds of
climaxed in the aqueduct of
and emerged as deity of
bagatelle and dust.
I emerge at the calm before the storm
where they can't reach me by the quake
Before the plunge I am unwithered and unworn
calling Mother at the folds where it was torn.
Cast as foetus and bag of stone
I am pulled down into a blend of effulgence
and the lungs linger in my mouth
before settling for breath between the bones;
marked by nascence and polished.
Held in an agitation of hands I am lifted
onto the summit of all things,
and she cries at the final separation
of our veins,
of our beings.
Or if the morning doesn't come
by the time you find home
I'll paint white doves by your feet
to take care of your bones,
so that if you can't open your eyes
by the time I come around
I'll lay in your grave, meet the gray ocean and
let you be
you'll get to know peace,
and the wind will tell me it's okay for you to leave.
I **** at writing love poems--
I'd rather indulge
on a feminist lens
because I hate the way
you look at me,
but today I'll let you
stroke my hair
without calling you a
Do you know that it’s in the way
that the breath of mine outlined the heart
and my body beat as a whole.
It’s in the drumming waves that
I found myself suffocating in the
raw submission of your hands and the
gentle rhythm of the hum that went
Not that it was supposed to mean anything
in the beginning,
but that it graced the blueprints of
my veins and shook the bones
and protruded from me,
and grounded me
into a grave of every fear
and bore roots of taboo words
on my tongue.
Not that I was supposed to feel anything,
but I did.
Written for my boyfriend of almost two years.
lowering into the hum of empty bones
among a tired floor
i feel unknown
i feel shaken by drowsy notes
from unruly voices
translating parts of me
between the cries for father and peace
between the silence on my lips that kiss
at the grave digger’s feet
i left in the early morning
before my own breath could
No, she did not stutter
when she felt the damp earth;
So rotted from her preceding bodies.
And they shrieked--those impetuous
tongues whose eyes lingered
from their ***** havens as they
knew the flavor of their smoke-
She did not stutter
when she felt the damp earth.
I can't part water into verses of basic poem:
the classic forms make me choke.
I can't pull the heart out and serve it up
into every wave that pillages the pores
and I do not know how to raise myself from
comfortable fetus to raging sailor.
But I am still alive
and I am sober apart from the fish.
That is enough.
I'm still listening
while the district sleeps alone
in the night--Where I am.
And beneath these howling sheets
I couldn't count my crosses
Daddy grows with the stalagmites now;
suicide off white rock
where mourning breathes staccato
with all the vibrations of a cross
as my bones wash away into
The great Sargasso.
No body can birth me now
in this dissonant space
with bluish tides stretched
to the corners of my mind
that echo deep into the crevices
the cracks the creeks
I breathe them in
like a wretched ceremony
an ode to my two thighs
that bear the weight
of outlandish theories
of what it would mean to be alive
and I wake up in the spring
mushrooms and flowers and things
bloom from the tips of the fingers to
the bottoms of the feet;
I am thawing.
— The End —