I am my own worst nightmare and there are no two ways about it.
I clink my wine glass against my chest, it shatters - conclusion, I am
made of stone. I try to bite the rust from beneath my thumb - conclusion,
I am a bicycle chain, adhering to endless walls. I pass through windows,
I pass through floodgates, through shaking hands - conclusion,
I am a phantasm. I am the night’s callous cat call, fondling the blushing sky,
ending the trees’ matrimony with a summer bloodier than my unkempt mosaic of a ribcage, seducing the winter, this body of contorted blooms.
Where did the rain go? Why don’t we talk to each other anymore? Does it hurt
to look into my eyes, these sludge-filled pools of buckling brown where my
withering once presented itself as a death or a mercy? I don’t want to
travel through ragged portals of love in sub zero temperatures, and I’m sick of mapping the icecaps of your contaminated heart, your mottled stars, your pits of hunger. Yet I think, maybe we’ll be okay here, if we just close our eyes and mime home. If we just regenerate these wasted lives.
I remember being twelve & accepting my existence, not as a girl,
with hair worn like the willows & lips parted in eager breath,
but a bloodletting - what froths at the mouth & fumbles for, desirous evenings, angry, humble, tragedies amidst the train station crowd, a reckoning, a massacre in motion, a smiting of seas, a grievance of scars. Reclaiming the might of hell itself. Loosening up your sore gut and the plump conscience. Trailing something pink between the thighs of shivering mountains. A beheading. Driving along country roads that turn you into a panting dog chasing its own tail. The first intake of breath after a kiss. Diving headfirst into fatal waters.
Sunday morning glory, silence in the barracks, the household walls sweat nervously, a second coming, surely, the birth of a god, surely! It can’t be the end. This can’t be the end.
Sweetheart, your love is a fetus, here, watch it grow, watch its tiny fists beat against the scraped surface of the mirror, and here is its spine (and you think, you can almost feel its heart, setting fire to all the villages on the other side of the river, maiming fences, stealing children) and here, we have the mouth, foggy as a swamp and slick with a warring tongue. It was never made to speak. It was made only to interrupt, to chagrin.
We are a pagan ritual. We are a blast of cold air. We slide the knives into our sleeves. We engulf, we envelope, we are living, we are dead. I take your hand, I close my eyes. We feel our braces tighten. You lean close, you whisper: darling, there is nothing that can stomach us. Not in this world, not in the next.