i. dremel uvula
we are girls. to hope is to expect. to revert back
to sticky hands, to beg between tantrum sobs
for lullabies. we are girls, we polish
our sentiments (with sandpaper tongues)
down to shining minimums
before bending at the waist to spit them
onto the kitchen table, beside the clay vase
of cut carnations. we girls wipe away excess saliva, knowing
nothing tastes as cloying as an apology. we girls dance
to the clatter of amethyst
on expectant dinner plate. to the fine china shards
we tape to brick walls. girls, girls
almost as demanding as
the word pretty.

ii. gardeneress
the gardeneress twists submission from silence
like warm bathwater from a washcloth
& hangs them both up to dry. looking at bookshelves
the same way she yanked out her son's teeth
in the dull living room bulblight. he watches as she
puts on shackles & calls it jewelry, he worries
he is not doing enough
with the words that lined her womb. how many
Aprils did it take to bury the anger?
rage nestling reticent in the garden bed
among deliberately labeled seeds, soiling the vegetables.
he chokes on carrot cake &
wonders how many novels
she stirred into the batter.

iii. pollock’s pointillism
there’s no beauty in carving, craving
metal drilled through bones, light enough to hang
from the front porch like a windchime. this I know
thanks to sweaty palms & swaying, fox chasing rabbit
around the feverish meadow of my belly. repetition
is numbness, why Prometheus gave us fire.
repetition is the bathroom mirror fogging as showerwater
grows scalding behind me, 27 more seconds
of plank. Michelangelo in a Monet,
my body & I. unhinging reverberations: skin skin skin.
but one cannot live in brushstrokes. or estimation, clouded mirrors.
once numb, what is there left to achieve? gold is
good as straw when I
cannot feel my fingertips.




19 years old

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