Rushing through my veins
Pumping to my heart
Driving me insane
Giving me this life
Giving me my breath
Filling me with strife
Why am I still standing?
What do I have here?
Why am I so different?
I am only a mere
Filled with blood
Filled with flesh
And all these bones
Flooding my insides
Filling up my lungs
There's nowhere I can hide
Two shots fired. Pop, pop Everything slows.
I can feel my heartbeat throughout my entire body, everywhere, right down to my toes.
Tell me, have you seen a bullet penetrate the skin? Rip through flesh?
I hope for your sake that your answer is no. One push and one release. Crimson liquid. Flowing fast So bright, so fresh.
Smell the iron. Its scent: rich and thick.
How would I describe it consistency? Slick.
Oh! There it is!
The blood of my Mothers’
My white sheets
Like a bouquet of English roses.
A shame -
Laundry day had
My thighs have been painted
Like my cheeks
When my gaze
Lingers on my body
Too long in the mirror
As I put on my Sunday dress.
The needles in my
Lower back fill my
Uterus with blood -
I am a woman now -
And as such I must
Wake before the sun
And wash my sheets
And my body
Before anyone has a chance
To smell the iron and the shame
Between my legs.
I have never been so
Acutely aware of my body:
My sore breasts feel like
Overripe tomatoes ready to burst,
My stomach bloated and taking up
Space I’m told is not ladylike -
My head throbs, my limbs ache, and
I continue to shed my insides.
How is it I never noticed
The cry of my body before?
A week of blood
Before I have served my sentence
For a woman
Who dared to disobey -
I clean the stains
And wash myself
you didn’t like the way i answered the phone,
and you thought it was gross that i liked mushrooms on my pizza,
and you told me i was weird-looking when i was a kid,
and once i sent you a tattoo and you said you didn’t like it, you didn’t know they were my words that were written on her body
you told me what “too much damage” meant on halloween after all the trick-or-treaters had fallen asleep
and when i kept silent for three days after,
and winced at every kissing scene on television, because they flooded the insides of my eyelids with images that made me feel very small,
you said i was being unfair
because i was the one who decided we were just friends,
and i told you we weren’t, you knew we weren’t
we couldn’t be after what we used to be
i told you i still had feelings that hadn’t gone away yet,
you said they hadn’t gone away for you either
i pictured you holding my hand
but then you said,
“that’s why it’s easier to run from them
and hide in other girls beds.”
you always told me every thought
that popped into your head, and i used to find it endearing,
i kept telling myself that you deserved my ear,
but i really hope you have nothing more to say
because, i promise, i’m done listening
so clear off your bedside table, and cut the
blue string that’s wrapped around your wrist if you’ve yet to do so,
and stop asking me if i miss you,
because this is me saying