VOL XIII Issue 10, Number 150
Editor: Klaus J. Gerken
Production Editor: Heather Ferguson;
European Editor: Moshe Benarroch;
Contributing Editors: Pedro Sena; Michael Collings;
Jack R. Wesdorp; Oswald LeWinter
As women we do not cry
Snow Whites verse and bride to her father
The art of a woman's tongue
Three days a month
Scarlets mirror, my pearl!
Before the trees
The memory of water
The woman is a serpent
A green knot of scales,
Her bones are bread sticks and these black birds
With their feathers gripped in midnight
Are flying her cumbrously to God
Drumming up these seven slipped skins.
Inside each, my uterus patiently waits
Empty as a cup,
There are no lying sperm! No bewitched egg!
The woman is an elephant
She is tempting Ophelia, the second moon of Saturn
With her white tail "Oh, I have such things to show you, come now, come."
I am following her
Because she is I
Her four eyes wink, baffling me, the Cyclops
With my two neat slits, my one young eye.
A splatter of artist blue failing
Any real blue, spun like a yarn to the sides of those corpses
These hybrid children that I have lent
Like a toothbrush to my neighbours' warm arms.
Those children, those swollen saints
Pausing for each sin I make. Those thin trees
Readying themselves for bubbling ten fingers,
The C cut, the stepchild
That will slide out in a curious sack
Her red face adorned with sea shapes and fins.
I have abandoned this sleepy room, nuzzled the door men with loose chain
Left the child barking. The blackened faced nurses
With the clipped wings crawling as blind worms
Snug in the wound of the world, gorged fat with death!
I know her ruddy body, the twisted neck wearing that face filtered
In newness, it is mine.
It is my fathers, my mothers
But not my brothers, how they feed it regardless
Hoping she will grow tall as a silky oak.
For nine months I lived with a tiny man inside of me
He had a beard, an apple skin, he had the appearance of a
Middle aged woman but I knew she was man
So I spat him out, quick as a seed.
I did not want him to sprout those
Two legs and ten fingers, a jug of milk!
The woman is a liar
Detesting the sun, she waits for winter
Inside her coat of petroleum, "light me, light me...quick!"
I am ripe as an orange, my eggs in a panic
And my hips. Two torn melons
With someone warm and new left between them.
Small and curled, like a battered wood grub.
The witch will smell her out
She will feed me dates and poisoned pork through shrewd fingers,
She will envision the death dance in my stomach,
Her feet betraying the silence as she grinds the hearth, laughing.
She will hand me over to the bone man
Wearing her best dress, one shoulder bare under the moon
Passing between them a ribboned shoe box, me small as an ant.
Finally, like your child's homecoming
A pitta-patter in your womb
On four sterilized feet.
I am an essential ingredient
To your sack of ten children
And with me comes the midwife,
The box, the roof, the ceiling.
I swallowed each of these seven pills
Seven little doors dead bolted.
Each night, gravy coloured thorns
Are laid out at the foot hole of this bed, a cunning trap
To snare the doctor, any one of my seven children.
I sleep, eyes taped to my lover's cheek,
Blind to the sun. She hates my dreams
Burning sets of lids into my feet.
I must be without this world where I am
The beekeeper, the two eyed queen!
Lift up my dress, small pear shaped breasts
Suggest my race.
A sinuous belly filled with early mist,
The unpeeled burn, rough as bark
It is still there after these years
Very faint, jutting in the light
And my mothers voice, drool yet just as violent
As Kosovo vomits itself into my ears like a cotton bud
And into our quiet house
She is slapping me awake and
Out of death's Co.
Out of his bed! She heard our groans,
They abase the small green slit of her winking eye
Its coiled colours deepening. I never change.
I am as handable as snow.
Freezing the fingers of my warm host.
My clipped bones reclaim their skin where I lay
Unformed and new in her womb.
She has taken them, this mother
And eaten my uterus like a pancake.
The nurse was tall,
A kind giant, her starched arms held me like a thorned wreath
Until my mother screamed for me,
This coiled bundle of new arms and legs.(The possibility of an us.)
The sky was threaded to the sea, two symmetrical twins
One wet, the other dry. Threaded now to the small room
I share with another's lumber body.
Shouldn't it have been warm and new in here, a first prize?
But it is black,
Black and small. A taped box!
I am the boxes' heart.
Two men, a pair of blue eyed dolls
One fat, one thin with a curved leg
Are throwing these silver lines, transparent like a web
Into the ocean, baiting her with a green feather,
A worm's placenta.
I thread my own thoughts onto similar hooks
All the while thinking, blood red between my fingers
Should they shake, like rattled worms?
Ten daughters keen to lift the imagined carp
From out of the wet. But only shells, how they'll do.
Twelve freckled caravans, the snails as good as gone
Eased between the accent of hotel keepers, women like
Birds in white rooms. I set them up between books,
A potted plant starving of greenness.
Blue weary words bow like laces.
One immeasurable tongue
Curls under the black chipped rocks' bottoms
Like a scarf, they can only carry themselves,
A hundred of these fossils
Dragging arms and legs towards our bare feet.
It is an Armageddon scene, the tragedy
Of allowing salt to lick away cavities to
Form brutal nothingness.
This sparrow's heart stays between my ribs
This small box with its old breadcrumbs,
Its smoky quartz flesh rippled
With a cluster of blonde heads. Some young family,
Charmingly torn from the pages of Mrs Dalloway.
It would be simple to close my eyes on this forever, a gift!
My body donated like bait to the ocean,
This one father. I lay down for him
As fish make kingdoms of my bones,
Riding the earth with me, curious beggars.
Pink paper trees have sparked a tenderness
The Chinese girl's hand quivers, I think she has an itch
But she is rolling flowers from thin bark
Thus the gentle maddening of nature.
It wears a straight jacket
And each child is one of its leaves
No bigger than a thumb.
Give me your children! It would hiss.
No girls, just the boys.
What would I do with a girl? Where would I go?
She is a tree, she will be my matchstick house.
Not my heart, it belongs to him
Black as a grave.
Stop bringing me the light in pin pricks,
Can't you see I am happy with my husband's choice.
Stop making me tender!
Breast and all, abort her!
Rip her from this fleshed shell with tweezers.
That bell inside of me.
Take her like a greying seed from my white throat
And put her under the mattress.
The clinic did, they did as I said!
Rolling her plump as a pea
Under my tongue, buried the orphaned seed
In my lean cheek like spot of death.
Go with her, I said!
Who ate from my womb?
My daughter is now gone
The hooded face of you!
Peeling my hips like an orange
My breast, citrus quarters!
And my body, it has stirred sleepily
From its numb roots
Melted the green flesh of the vine.
My arms, warm quarters
Bother a crib, an auctioned house
With seven bedrooms
Eight neat beds
And ten bee boxes swelled with gold limbs!
The river has returned this year
The fishing boats, the swollen bodies
Of bathing pregnant women have also come
Sweeping the fruit from the trees
A swarm of fruit flies.
Oh the sky is falling!
Who ate from my womb?
Picked the flecked mole from my stomach
Stole life like beans?
Lima beans, with a dark laughter,
A half smile.
As women we do not cry
Eden robbed the snake!
In return the snake defiled woman
Cast out that spare rib.
Deficient of that rib, that spot of God
She could then throw off the third eye of man
And climb trees without ladders
Keeping the apples to herself...
Mary was a plain girl. Flat, the likelihood of a pre-pubescent
Boy filed out in silks and long hair. The other women
In the circuit dresses,
Each checked thumb like an onion head.
They are rifled with laws in their words, airy conversations,
Grouped as corn starved birds.
Mary, yes that one who gave it up to every man that got
Her name right. An entire faith.
Whore wears suits and weds images of his weeping mother,
Sad little boys, such whores.
They are all dead
Hatching into mummies and daddies from wet eggs,
Shell hoods sharp bones. The afterbirth is some
Grey felt oyster on their new pink skins.
An entire tree, with only three leaves nibbled by the
Edge of shy fingers to cover one womb, two breasts
Like smiling children. Walking Czars with real hearts,
Swinging four dead girls from each nipple.
Caramel frames with an extra rib, regular dishes
In awe at the penis of Christ.
When I saw them later on, waist high in the river
Splashing pails of water onto their breasts,
Fingers biting their eyes. As women we do not cry.
Men in dresses, hairy one toed daughters
That I have shared flesh and bone with, tightly spun threads
Of anatomy between
Without valium, without the body of Mary.
My cervix rung out, ding-ding as a small bell.
I menstruated, being twenty-two it was allowed
But had I, invisibly been taught in the ways of neglecting
My own red solace, by buying back that rib.
Chasing the snake through Eden. My belly is a hot air balloon
Strained and pinched like a kite from my hips.
An empty fish bowl tapping the lidless eye of Adam,
His dead stare conditioning woman with a fresh beating
Marking her like an atlas so she won't forget the stories.
Hell is there, a silver coin on my eye
I want to pay my own way!
God, an awful white woman with full cream milk breasts
Has split my body into a half
Allowing men to make me their shelter, to wither
Forth like worms so I would push for years
Denied the effects of morphine.
These dwarfs killing me from the inside
With blunt axes.
As women we do not cry.
Part one - a man in the house of woman
I cut off all of my hair, cut of my
Arms, my legs, my heart.
I am a bleeding stump. I look, introspectively onto the great waste.
Do you not walk on me? Your knees quietly involved
With my hair.
Do you not miss my arms? And my legs that would
Wrap about your neck like twin vipers.
Daddy, you remain in Bethlehem without a name,
Some Christian name but daddy,
Like the unforseen daddies. That word,
Sharp as a scalpel has cut me, unhinged my clitoris, a quiet circumcision
I did not scream.
I wanted you to be proud of me, to wrap me up in your parodies,
To take me back to Paris where your mother lies as a crippled
Ladder in a box.
Your yellow eyes circle upon me
I know you. Can I be you?
Take your coat, your teeth, your gun.
Do they resemble you? Your numb sperm.
I am someone's fat wife, someone's wishing daughter,
Someone's lame fuck!
I am something glittering
Between your teeth like a piece of unchewed meat
A sprung rabbit!
The women in the stage house rocked as sea lights
Gathering a dollar from each of us.
We walked pinned legged to our seats, filed in as peas.
A strap torn from that boy's hand
He thought I was a man
So he was rough with me, bruised my lips with stones
And your face, I marvel was his, one white eye
In the ebb of your pillows lid.
Part two - a man in the boat of woman
I am eating oranges, suckling the pulp from between its eyes
Like a lunatic,
Remnants of the sun, these fat ancestors that drank directly from
A socket of warmth. It's all glamorous,
A put on rag that sleeps inside of me like a stiff child,
Like you daddy, a hint of witchcraft.
It was my first time
My arms dangled from Ophelia as
You drove a piston through my belly.
I remember the pollen falling
Lightly, as flour onto our dark heads.
You said I had a halo
You lied, you lied!
Snow White's verse and bride to her father
What are they hiding? These masked dwarfs,
This love sick prince, this mother?
A small town pressed on the edge of a city
Line after line of apple trees. Red globed goblins,
Polished like a shoe.
The guilty inheritance of trees eaten from the inside,
Spat out; spat out into the throats of us girls!
All young girls here will fill out into men
Inhabit the one eyed sperm.
Twelve bodies lined like leaves along a sill,
Gently browning, snatched by spirituous fingers.
They will pack their pockets in pieces of mirror
And cross to escape the dementia of mother, some queen.
I remember her. Cold white hair, edgy as Prozac.
She would never melt, even when I stuck her on the coals,
Stuffed her with acorns and butter.
This is what child birth makes of us,
Amazons, peelers of apples, Vikings!
Papa, he is safe in my locket,
Around my neck where he click-clacks
Against my breast like a small axe
Chipping away my heart.
I am a bell, great enemy
Borrower of the light. Oh, how I have kissed you
And your little hood,
Massaged you under my tongue.
We are on the edge with these two separate bodies.
Aren't these out homes? Building and stretching these huts
From lion skin so when I bleed each month
You can bury me to the shoulders
Dragging the night with you as an eye lid
Screaming, screaming off with her head!
I have seen your hearse being dragged
By the wolves through the forest
Their claw etched hooves and you
Go thump! Thump!
Like a fig in my womb.
Guess what, domestic audience?
I have miscarried two babies.
I have watched them exit from between my legs
Like slippery eels, their purple faces knotted and I
Dreamt of golden hair against my breast.
All the while death used his fingers
To pluck at my flesh like a harp.
How they dance between one another. Ten pretty children.
I had them flushed, removed from my hips
By the surgeons egg spoon and pot. The blue
Capped nurses were seagulls picking the
Death worms from my temples.
Carrying my dead children past the queen in
They had her face, gorse covered bodies like jelly fish
Rose and flattened as if they were made for the sea.
Oh all of my precious ones
That I have bled in the shower
Day after day
There are no fire works. Striped of my cast.
The dwarfs have arrived home
They are still as colour blind
The apples all black, the grass red.
The dwarfs have come through this door
With their shovels and insides bulging with grubs.
Three little men, small as mushrooms
My baby brothers
That have replaced my heart with that of a pig's.
The art of a woman's tongue
Turn around! I see you.
Hairless as a baby's cracked corn young
Real as a cherry. Ripe and full
Dissolving a valued green stem, a crippled pulse.
Its pregnant swell rolled from the jaunts of fingers to
Return with the frost.
This white grandmother ravishing what briefly came
Alive in the sun.
Our sex is not discussed, not with you mother anyway.
Leading you under the bypass of greying willows, their stringy
Leaves. The jittering crows, these loons,
Like ash the wind scatters them from the trees
Into a thousand graves.
Under this hedge, these thorned arms
Dark dipped veins littering the creek's vulva
Between our bones like plucking tweezers.
I rival the watchman, the moons lit pupil...
Am I the queen in this ancient house?
Sitting in your middle ear
Like a bud of something pink
Waiting for the bee's stinger to pluck me!
There is no eager penetration
No easing into our birthday suits like twin jelly beans -
But these feathers nailed to my breast.
I am some kind of kite constructed from
The house of love. I am some species of woman,
A killer of birds! I am erected.
Early morning, jabbing at the lite end
Of an infected toe nail. A photograph of
Daddy, he is soft porn in the bed-sit.
Early morning, you have been gone for over an hour
And I am a lame off-cut, limping to the toilet
To the window wearing nothing
But green feathered earrings.
I have decided to eat nothing, stare into an empty plate
Envision cheese and liquor chocolate,
Bits of my lover (for breakfast)
I have taken to sleeping with the cat, to picking at
Its black and white fur like stuck tape
Replacing your drunk sperm
With its spearmint eyes.
Its delightful love bites
With your lips. I remember them,
Plump as oyster flesh, quietly stretched
Across your face after sex. Those lips,
Buttered tarts, things to long for on bus trips.
Three days a month
Three days a month
Twelve times a year
I bleed but I do not die
Inside a white silk pupa,
My womb rips off its children
As trees tear themselves clean
I am house keeping,
Simply riding towards the butcher's guillotine.
Eight years I have bled
And in the wrong house I have
Sucked entire oceans waterless
Concentrating on replacing my babies,
My pot plants caught by tea cups.
Is it my right to bleed?
I am again small, famished for fruit
The harvest put away,
The workers returning home to their pearl teethed lovers.
I am contained within the shed, fed men
By string! And they now know,
This family with its books and spindled beds that I am
At last, ripe as a plum.
In season. A fox that the blood hounds will tear
Into menial pieces, will carry back to man.
You are built for bullfights.
I am built for children
I have eaten all of my children
I have burnt down my homes.
You have killed a crippled bull for me.
Anchored its bloodied head above the kitchen door
Like a Catholic cross.
I have cooked nothing but clover,
Nothing but children.
You have eaten without asking,
Loved me without warning
Deeper than bone.
Scarlets mirror, my pearl!
We set her hair on fire as she slept
This mother, this tender green plant.
Oh, she will collapse
Like a yellowed apple, the centre eaten right out.
Will she turn black?
They peel from the window, easily as coins
Clutching that same fake mirage, a pool in a desert.
Fig skins, blue veined in their nettled hoods
Small lava like children, bellies stuffed with hair.
I prick them, they are as flat as dust now,
Neat necks like vases
Heads bobbing on the ends
Of long leafless stems, too weak to hold up
They roll like eyes in the back of bleached bones.
Night, she lights up the yard
With her hands ablaze, two candlesticks
In dance. Put me out!
The moon is a skull
She must have lost at least ten eyes
Had they rolled from her
Slow as snails, starred back like orphans
Tweezed from the belly of this firm tree
As it saw the water for the first time,
Surely this would put me out, pull down my lids.
This hunger, a meat memory
For years I have eaten grass
And suddenly I yearn for a piece of her arm
Rare, de-boned, still bloodied.
Inside this mother, the pache-mamma statue
I can hear each tendon grow and gather its children.
Wombs filling with cropped haired girls, fake little boys!
And giving you, these needy starving men back like lost rings.
Nailing their mouths to your drought hung breasts in search
Of the eternal mother but resembling bats,
Latching onto the trees torn flesh digging into her
Belly with a knife.
I rented a small house by the sea.
A freckled snail's shell with two bedrooms, a bath - no shower,
And a tiny, one woman's kitchen with matching sunflower curtains.
A bowl of preserved figs, a collection of child's hair bands.
A peaked bed with four cat's feet.
I wore a blue dress and walked shoeless to the beach markets to buy strawberries,
Crunched over the dying bodies of nerveless leaves
To amuse myself with double creamed milk. One glass of it each morning drunk secretly
In bed, but fattening me publicly.
Down on the beach, it was a Tuesday
I was swimming, legs thin as stalks
The colour of beetroot.
I wondered at the sand behind me, would it give me away?
Would the fish smell me out? Chase me from the sand?
Broken babies and all.
I was sure I was to bleed to death,
Die ribboned in my fever. A hundred degrees with no cool cloth.
I was sure I would die!
But I stayed white down on the rocks
Toeing the blue jelly fish lung.
There were a hundred of them asleep on the boat ramp
They had come in their masses. The water, their
Anguished mother had silently abandoned them, left them at
The supermarket. Walked away, without remorse, a little less complete
But for the better.
I collected one in a empty marmalade jar and filled it with tap water,
Left it adopted in the bathtub.
I remember weeping, like a widow in your car when you dropped
Off my things in tea cups, my hips flattened to the sea.
These moulds pressed into clear faces
Sealing a flapping lung between the pages of hands. It died right there,
You fed me an olive, I fed you jelly!
I choked, what use is the sea with its frail bones
That hassle my feet you do not belong.
I am a mirror creature, something for the land. I bleed.
I do hide it. Burying myself to the chest in the sand,
Giving away my dresses.
If I had had tears they would have revived you,
Laughing jelly fish. Your black iris
Stems like a bud from my knees,
Captures the inward light of breath. Drinks from my closed lids.
I have left the clean air of the sea, the city stinging my lungs
Like a bee. But my skin
It stayed behind in those brown pelted shoes, two dried sea cucumbers
The ones we discovered under the rocks
Healing its cavities with moss
As I hid. Small as a pin and covering my uterus in seaweed.
Beet red dye rolled like a pearl down my leg.
Weeping, I fed the sea my arms. It has taken it to some
Dark place where only the dead can get to.
I am a hook
This is my bait
Attracting the fish
The culprit orange carp.
A pit of a mouth, strangely twisted
As if to greet death puckering.
A pit of a mouth!
That kneads the surface with its tongue
Bobs, slips off its arms
And then takes me into its stomach.
The sun does not get to me here
I am in a valley, a flute pipe,
An awful script edited by the blind.
Shouldn't time have stopped?
Now I am in this black grid
Facing the hangman, one on one
With his tools, rusted spikes and balls
Perilously attractive. I stare at them
As if these quiet steel blades might
Bloom, may unpeel like a bud
And I, I the wasp fear that I am too small
I mightn't hang so well!
I drink you from a passing cup
I arrive by plane. My lips
Red as bloodied cloth.
My desk is untouched, lose threads of last night
Peg themselves to words. It is a clothes line, air it.
I am cleaned
My hair is washed, arranged, placed.
My tongue, a furry sponge still tastes of fish
Hammering like a heart in my cheeks.
A throat burnt, a green plum.
I spit you up
Like sour breast milk. The unclean.
They have stood in for me
Held my arms, ripened me.
I am now an authentic human being,
A doctors cured.
Oh mother, your electric cell is padded!
Have I been a burden? A cripple?
You, in your whitest dress and pleated apron
Have become my hospital where I am kept in check,
Knotted in your yellow hair like a bougainvillaea.
You are my drip, my plastic tube that sits at my chest
Kicking in life when I refuse it through
Two narrow straws.
Choking me, my maternal pearl...my mummy dance...
For nine months I was fastened to your body like a tick.
I was safe and nursed in those shark less waters.
Your twin hips, a whale's bone.
He was in the bathroom with his harpoon
Waiting to snare you,
The stealer of treasures!
Mother...back to her. To my roots.
Where every thing is a lite hospital room,
Is a mobile cherry tree.
Guided inside her, a dark fish
Reborn to a shockingly pale witch.
The ball and chain.
Before the trees
Let colour return to their cheeks,
Let them grow moles and fingernails,
These plum trees, I grew them from small dark pips.
First I put them in my mouth
Ate their flesh, baring their bones
And then buried them, black and unformed in the ground.
The worms became their friends, the birds their fools.
They are ten this year and are in heat
Deaf leaves dipped in a black wax.
They crackle, they are becoming too big for their skins!
My eye has caught them, a white place set out
In four neat rows and my heart, it bounced like a red ball
These multiple gifts wrapped in your merciless grasses.
Each night, by six it grows increasingly black
As if someone has let down a blind, a bun of hair.
The moon and her three rings
Steal the plums colouring, this orb of bean paper
Tacked to the rim of God. Has it a face?
They yawn, great crashing sounds
These bones, these hips.
They do not pass away
Not like a body, but stir to a halt.
Hibernates in a forest of spies and under those
Dull green arms a small head
Broadens in the sun, the first born.
There are children everywhere,
I am stepping on them with my boots,
Smearing their hearts with my heel.
I have killed twenty today
Made jam from their stomachs, pickled their eyes!
The oranges are in season.
The bees are silently penetrating the open legs of corn flowers.
The rows are set, neat vertical decors
Managing such complete mornings in the body of an eyelid.
The earth's black mass has swung,
I stay, fragile as snow in your bed.
It is a hot Saturday. I cannot bear the normality
Of eggs this morning, the hungry child screaming for her feathers.
The paisley table cloth, the canary's yellow!
The clock will let me know when to get up
When to merge.
My neighbour keeps anonymous. The dead complete the dark
In a valley of second suns. They are a chain of letters. A key.
The drowned woman possesses the sea, small golden fish
Are taking pieces of her
Like field mice. She, their eternal cob, the gravy train.
My neighbour struggles with her fruit trees
A cloud of locusts bludgeon the healthy plants, they are done for!
She will starve this year. I will lend her bread.
Fed, the waters rip
Sucking on a black weight, the nauseating pacifier,
A washed child.
Adopting my raincoat, a red hat. I remember being out of the house,
Getting my period
The hot thrill of not being pregnant,
My white skirt done for.
I have come to this stage
Holding my great tongue
My father's hand.
He swims like a goldfish
Gills stuffed fat with my fingers.
I watch him circle
His clean skin close to mine.
We are almost one
Transformed into Siamese twins.
June, the month of bells,
Of falling skies.
White lace torn from the paedophile's cross.
He said follow the ferry to you.
Sweet listeners with your names on your foreheads
Like red ticks, how-to-do's!
Do you know anything of me yet?
Do you know the night?
The partitioned forest of Antarctica?
Its pulse that hums like a bee
On my podium where I have come to you
Obliged as a politician to lie for you,
To epitomise your nature!
I have come, nearing death
Holding him to my cheeks like a stone.
I have named a price on your purest head. My
I couldn't keep it pinned down
Like one of those death butterflies
Shooed from the trees with a green gas.
So poor paper riddles, plastic hats...achoo!
I have told you my latest secret with my
Red heart puffed like an adder and my
Cheeks flushing poison.
Laying in the
Belly pushed flat
The streetlight peers through
The space of hips
His chin like a turkey's neck.
Left thigh pressed along
The valour seat covering
As he comes
Walk from death to supper
In a new dress...in an entirely
As you are shipped home
In a coffin, laced like a corset.
A full year shredded between bed feet,
Red and yellow. Bug faces of confetti.
This is the way!
This is how to get to the dead.
Seaward, held in a uterus,
Wet and sponge-like.
I am in the hospital, its glittering walls
Its septic tank where the dead
Are talking of pulling their bones
From the world,
To trick the warden.
I am led to room eight by a fat nurse
Yesterday, a woman died in my new bed with cancer
It had finally eaten her heart.
And the nurses, painted clowns
Fluttered in like bats
Erasing the room of its lasting dead,
And now I lay like a sea lion
Gobbling up fish. The nurse bites me
Every two hours with a needle, this one eyed spider.
The other wards,
Life addicts, death addicts
All birds with snapped necks!
The pillows in their whitening fields
Are as keen as snowflakes, rasping for a warm head.
There is a vase of crinkled flowers, all ornaments
A gift, a love gift
Mailed with a green card
Small bees flying paper kites and laughing.
Now that I have this proof of love I peel them
Like seed. I am in the third grade with a star
Placed affectionately on my breast.
I am desiring my teacher.
The key is an invaluable recipe of me transforming
From the ice tray to the glass, the sick to the pedestal.
Your odd white dress
It is only three o'clock. You look like a nurse
How I hate you in white
On your way to fix me like a table,
To pull my legs from their roots, to plant me.
Paper sheets, hard hats
You enter like ghosts
Wanting bodies to live in like warm houses.
I must eat; I must force these dry grins,
Hatch eggs in my nest.
You spill your yolk like water
Clear and offensive.
And I am the small bee, this pea on your plate
Rolling from your knife.
Oh, how you laugh at me like golden necked lions
Draped in health like meat.
The memory of water
Father, you are concerned with
The rust that is killing the trees' branches.
But you are leaving the trees, my mother
And bandaging your heart with bed sheets.
You are remembering to forget me in my sad green dress,
Approaching you as a woman and you
Are looking for that child in volumes of photo albums.
She is dead. Have you noticed that I own breasts?
They came up, intimate pink buds
Like they had been planted for this reason,
Two bulbs growing like apples.
You will eat them on me, you will return
Home numb and carrying the snow in sheep's skin.
The white ferry has floated past our house
Where the pines shoulder the flat hills
Where they bleed from their cut off hands.
I cannot touch them as
Their brown scars heal and they bloom
Clean fresh fingers. We cut them down in November and used
Them as Christmas trees and fire wood.
They weren't happy but draped their
Crippled arms about us as
Back scarfs. I cut off a piece of my own arm and
Planted it by its gnawed roots. Nothing grew, nothing transformed!
We have killed an entire forest, we are butchers
Me and you father both, have switched bodies and domesticated a language.
Here is the hangman, above us. A clove basket,
A clever tool. The garden is growing over its edges
And I am hacking off its limbs, sparing nothing.
Where are my knees? The dark pubic hair.
There is nothing between them,
No beet red child's face. No lion,
No deaf actor.
The water runs clear. I can see
Through it bars. When I move it parts.
Am I the white boat tilting its hair?
My feet float, twin rudders and my hands
Like square oars are beating, separating me
From these lines. Shouldn't it be white in here?
It is Halloween, the witches are out
Gathering bag fulls of fat children like berries.
A pink pip emerges from the centre of me
Like a cut thumb, Red Riding Hood
Has stripped in my lap, has proven me real.
All poems copyright (c) 2005 Jessika Wong
All poems copyrighted by their respective authors. Any reproduction of
these poems, without the express written permission of the authors, is
YGDRASIL: A Journal of the Poetic Arts - Copyright (c) 1993 - 2005 by
Klaus J. Gerken.
The official version of this magazine is available on Ygdrasil's
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