Tagged: art

Domain

if you put a carcass
on the roof, the rats
will get it before
the birds

I do my coughing
on the roof
you do your
proving

you impress the doctor
with a bouquet
I ask stupid questions
that I hope

sound like love
then we go get ice cream
you choose something brilliant
I get chocolate

people celebrate
having finished the maze
nevermind
getting out

we’ll start
a new life in it
we’ll get ice cream
after our negative tests

then drive up and down
the one road
covered
in string lights

revving our lack
of ideas
like the start of a new
world until

boom, it appears, and
we’re here, this tiny world
with not enough space
to space out

as they float on bars
sit on each other
sink the land
into the sea

Worm-Like

once I let the machines
repair my body
they power washed my stomach
drilled relief
into my tail
one guy spent the entire time
in my jaw, just scraping
they must have missed some
anxiety, I guess – what I
described to my parents as
a knife above my chest
not stabbing, just hovering there
I’ve got it down to my tummy
I’m trying to push it out
I’ve ejected my appendix
anxiety – what I describe now
as a strange fungus
aboard a ship
oh to cut it loose
watch it drift into the cold
never to return
never to wonder if you love me
to devalue your love so
never to make things wrong
because it’s easier
because I know these things by
prescription, or strand
because I blame them
or make them disappear to
appear changed
it’s still here
it’s in the room with us now
one day I will loose my hair
my eyesight
my home planet
one day there will be a voice
the one who keeps anxiety
at all costs
from reaching my hands
the poles
dowels in every pore
tie the rope you tie
around my wrists
nothing can escape when we go

Playing Dead

for a possum to play dead effectively
it can’t look too good
evolutionary priority is given
to the ugly – the mottled fur
the hairless face like carrion
the chitinous tail, the smell

if a possum chooses another
she will do so for its longevity
its eligibility based on ugliness
therefore beauty
the young are carried on the stomach

tight against fat hanging
towards the ground, dragging
through ticks and the litter
disgusting, undesirable
reliable

no one comes for the possum
not the hungry, nor the thirsty
the possum does not pretend
to be alive – it is therefore safe
it is ready to drop dead
at any moment

a long, upturned smile
the secret – to live precisely
when you must

Nebulizer

my breath comes running up, alarmed
holding bags

my breath is sinched at the waist
my breath

is afraid to put it all the way in
my breath is unsure of the door

it rolls up a towel to
block the light

it knows footprints by weight
my breath escapes through

the window, and though it lives in me
it looks like a robber

feels like a robber, like
it has something of mine in its pockets

in this way my breath cares about
what others think

other’s thoughts hurt. other’s
thoughts can be controlled

my breath controls them
oxygen – a bundle of stones in the arms

of my breathing, a breathy voice, a
circulatory mind

my breathing is pot without
a drain hole

my breathing is root rot
my breath continues, though I

miss a few here and there
they fly over my head or

over my shoulder. it is a joke, or
salt, my breath, which today

feels like someone else’s. it is not enough
or maybe, it is too much my own

Clay Mask

I cover my skin in earth, as if
my skin is not earth
as if little mounds don’t grow from both

both are like space to bugs
or looks

why don’t you respond to me sometimes?
you’ll just sit there, staring, as if
there isn’t a buzzing
you need to cover

as if you won’t fill with ocean
if you stop moving
stop picking at yourself constantly
stop picking yourself

there is fire in your chart, without which
there can be no stone, no earth
yet I am all earth, no fire
I must have come from somewhere

another layer perhaps, deeper than skin
where I generate my own heat
my own light
like a vent that warms the sea

Missy

Our girl hears Missy Elliot
on the radio, 95.9 – The Throwbacks
She knows all the words the way
you don’t really, just play the sounds
so when she enunciates GO DOWNTOWN
EAT IT LIKE A VULT-CHA we laugh
She knows that part, of course, but
then again she does know vultures
She jumps off the couch and soars
like a vulture. She dries her hair over
her face like a vulture does its wings
She puts her hands up against the light
– a shadow puppet vulture
She is black and furthest away
She sees vultures and takes binoculars
but can’t find them
The light is too bright

Pesticide 2

ants grow their fungus
in my ears
confuse my eyes with pools

they touch me, expand
get used to me
not moving

I try to see their whole bodies
in a way I’ve never seen
my whole body

but can feel it

I am up top, pressed
against glass
I am standing too close

to the moon
It goes down my body
to the planet

I try to see its whole body
in a way I have never seen
my whole body

but can feel it

Battery Effect

tonight it has been red

then yellow, then luminous white
I think coral, copper, cotton, rattle

at one point it was below the water
before that it had never left

now it’s here, and I know instantly
that I know something, just not what

maybe I feel the moon’s knowing, or I
heard something, the stars

discussing the moon’s politics on the Earth
children in their adult poses

doing mounted police, doing plumbing
doing queen and king

they do bullhead, water-bearer
they don’t play the root, as you have

or me, the stone with a root in it
we are fixed to the hood of the Earth

the sun does a firm bounce off the moon
it goes down a corridor before

coming back, unlocking the next
entrance, and the next, perhaps everything

a baby gate opens, the milky way opens
we are ferried to our rooms in secret

swept in by birds, to be checked on
later, though they know we will be gone

in their wisdom they can see themselves coming
as I have seen myself coming, and you

our mouths open to the same phase
your blood a belt of red, the candles yellow

my reach a luminous white

Vision at Fallen Home

we took his couch, some
tools – to help
evacuate belongings

we took his cords

the garden too
has been demolished
though hummingbirds return
for the turk’s cap
along the fence

they go from stagnant
to blistering
which feels familiar

one transcendence
to another
a tourist in each

starting to head back
then pulled out
by color, certain
red objects

brilliant against
old footage

a poppy
a war

in many ways I feel
that we knew each other before
we must have done

the way you identified my mouth
like a plant from home

and I know your hands

and I fear so capably
your loss, as if
it has happened

Candida

your heart will hurry
to the places it’s been
a note tied to its leg
what if the quiet place

in your mind vanishes, or
worse, is given to someone else?
for now though, this is us
this is a city

it shows us its spirits
it calls when the grass
is too long, stops calling
when the grass dies off from sun

where the ice cream truck
does circles, donuts
do your ears hang low
and the occasional BOOIIIOIIINNGG

or HEELLOOO?! we lay
in its sound, having just licked
each other, perpetual lawn mower
I guess the gears of the world

dairy for the diligent whackers
and every house, broken in
on champagne, with its windows
smiling through a baby

under expansion, like most things
built to withstand fire
bison, winter, crop
shortages and floods

termites, outages of power
the way things are
underneath, before eventually
there is a die off

a long low moan without
complaint, the REMEMBER ME
of life that has taken hold
bugs in two dimensions

a flattened Earth holding
more of us, all at once
if she is trying to say something
we wouldn’t know

she is collapsed upon. so
we move forward
in the old way
in which you’re only allowed

to replace yourself