A lady bit a face into a leaf
when the wildflowers were asleep
The face a plate of shock and horror
at what the world had become
The top of the face, a pumpkin’s
handle, eyes to the sky
carved into a scream
When the flowers woke
they didn’t understand who was among them
and they could not escape
A turkey vulture flew overhead
eyes on the dead
who stood paralyzed
on the verge of a thing
I am clutching my favorite book
and the devil knocks. She’s fat and grey and cross-eyed.
At least consumptive devil I know, in her room, flat ass, wetting her pants as she sleeps. Why did you make me hate this house? It was the prettiest of all the 18.
No sleep for me, just a forgetting and a morning re-read. In the book, the venison sounds amazing, but I wouldn’t know. Later, I would know chops and applesauce, but tonight I swallow fear.
Fear for the things I never did.
Fear for the things I would never do.
Fear from emerging from a traumatized womb, where a dick filled with heroin and a 12-pack were the perfect paring for the perfect empath. Physiologically and psychologically magnificent, and
ready to question the world.
I put you out to the universe
and you came back
as a boomerang
You spun in front of me
and I held you with my stare
(you are not for them)
Whirring, full, caught in my throat
my eyes swam in blind
I hung my jeans on light hangers
Fearless isn’t thoughtless
wild and precious
it’s a chaotic calculation
step through the river, so clear
and cold, so inviting but
deadly, who is below at
your toes, your ankles?
life’s piranhas lingering there
wanting for you to drown,
to sleep in that one piece,
blue, folded legs like a smooth
labia, yes I said it mother,
I see you watching me, thinking
I’m untamed and sit on rounded
heels and and you’d be right will you
throw me in the
lake again, this time harder,
with more force, your shoulders
barely buckling, oh mother, you
gave me wings, but kept me
clipped, scaled, a good swimmer
and the lizard in me wanted
to stay below deck, clutching
a wet Laura Ingalls, begging
you to leave me be; sweep the
angels, kill the angel, let the
angel leave, rocks in pockets
below the float buoyed by hope,
always buoyed by hope
not like my dream, where I’m standing in flowers.
instead, my field was peppered with peppers, little legs, bloody red, crawling
up mine as I watched
daisies from afar, against a little house,
you outside, red-head, can’t hold too tight to that.
red is fading now
back to bed
fade to pepper
fade to flowers
I dreamt that I opened my kitchen door
To see a lone pigeon staring up at me
Smooth gray feathers and a golden eye
I couldn’t bear to close the door…so I woke up instead
I see color.
Though I have no illusions that the world revolves around me, I do think that I am spoken to. The words are always there. Sometimes they whisper, sometimes they are loud, but they are always speaking.
I’m in the same boat as everyone else, but thankfully not a large boat off the shore of some unfortunate harbor. I’m not going to name it, though, it’s already been named. It’s some version of the Scottish Play, and let’s just leave it at that. And we’re all staring out, unfortunate actors, waiting for a cue, waiting for the next act.
I had a laugh when this play began, as it was right before I was supposed to embark on some sort of personal journey for three months. Like space was going to be made for me and I would work out all the shit in my life. Oddly, space was made for me, but not in the way that I wanted. Instead, the streets and my neighborhood around me said “have a listen” and “have a look-see.”
And what I heard were birds, and fewer of them. I saw and heard Western Bluebirds, my lonely wrens and sparrows in the bushes, and an eerie calm. And I saw color in my yard – yellow, pink, lavender, and white. White is prettiest as a blooming azalea at dusk, the sky filled with dark clouds.
And so, I thought, this is the space. The world is quieting down to where I can think.