Let her out


The wax in your wane

Needle on smooth track

A song from twenty years back

When you didn’t have

The holes you have now

Crocheting skin with doubt

When you just threw yourself open

Dancing in a crowd with long wick

Breasts high, chin tight, feet on tiptoe

The candle lasted all through night 

And we spilled, like red polinated seeds

Out into dark city streets

Bra straps, cyclist legs, powdered glee

It’s not the bravado of youth 

But the absence of ghosts

Keeps us free

***

I am you 

I am the flicker of past who asks

What did you do with your true self?

Packaged up in trepidation so soft

Lulled yourself to sleepwalking 

Years passed like finger on fast forward

Before you know 

Almost

On the cusp of memory

A girl with an open smile

Running towards you

Gone, not lost

Unpick the confine

Let her out

That she may find again

Herself

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Re-deliver

thNo

you can’t be

you died giving birth

legs gaping

mouth heaving out

curses

you stained my forehead

with the yolk of an egg

meant for curanderos

to interpret

your throat as long

as two hands encircling

a belly tearing out

her burden

your lovers wore felt

holding their hats in nicotine fingers

instead of joining you

theirs was the watchful crow

blue in lamplight

touch the fleeing blood

growing cold on lynx tiles

she was your lover

all of you shared her

grief and easement

like a tenancy of trombones

blowing cold you are

unable in your tarnish

to re-deliver her

scolded by her nature she is

bound by insemination

pushing against her wet thighs

a different kind of urge

get it out get it out get it out

her eyes inherit the cataracts of her

blind ancestors

you rue the days you turned her like a book

leafing through her cavities

planting your frustration in her deep recess

not thinking for a future

where blood makes palm prints

on her hot cheeks and as she lifts in agony

you recall her climax and breathe in

the stale dusk of death

ushering life on the tail end of

unwanted consequence

here is your daughter

she stands naked and boneless

sucking your inability to

grow dignified and wise

you fidget in your plastic seat

as her hands grip your weakness by the stem

enveloping provocation as

men will reach for their reflection

one last time

smoke to the last

their comfortable curse

feet reddened by women

who die beneath

deed

Polemic

Girls Doing Handstands, Southam Street, London 1956

A polemic once

mapped the world and

chambers of the heart

declaring

men love men three percent proof

and women love women

once or never

It explained the empty feeling in the bars

girls playing boys hitting balls into green pockets

It explained why gay men swelled in number

disco fever, why did they smell so much better?

is it nature or nurture?

testosterone in the womb or green enchiladas?

is it birth order or red hair?

left-handedness or playing Barbie too long with your sisters?

was it the color purple or your best friend Michael

showing each other what you had beneath the lilac tree

screaming and shouting FRANKFURTER!

at the top of your lungs

running as fast as you could

a natural instinct

the adults

drinking Pims Number One

look up briefly with reddened lips

boys will be boys

and girls will be girls

they nod all-knowing

knowing nothing

of the sum and the handspan

found only in the dial and fragile turn

of wonder

The borderlands of your mind

christian-schloe-94There’s a look in her eye

it says I am strong and I do not know

yet how deep this goes

to join with protective arm in the moist earth those who stand before and after

except there will be no after

my child lies sleeping eternal sleep, my womb will no more facsimile

it ends with me

I stand alone when you pass and I remain when you are gone

It is the sorrow you always saw in my eyes

I knew

the price of freedom is to be alone at the last hurdle

a strange familiar pain, turned to in twisted recognition

strength usually accompanied numbers, other families look on

you can hear them with their dismay

she is the poor one who inherits isolation

and what I have learned, is the truth of this and the lie

you may share a name, a legacy, a generation or a string around your finger

and still within you

nobody

nobody thinks to inquire in a room-full of noise

you may be speaking loudly, no-one will listen

captivated by their carousel of cacophony

so when you said I was formed of my choices

you were right

and what you missed, was your own price

for we all believe ourselves immortal to obscurity

it is my fate to understand this

it is your torment to chase

the dragon you seek and avoid

he will never let you catch him

you will never discover why

the borderlands of your mind

make enemies of love so well

Freedom from your scorn

babushka_1-tcall me anything you like or don’t call me at all

you’re cold when I’m hot and hot when I’m cold

many years past you asked that I leave

go away you said this isn’t your continent you do not belong here this is not your country

your jaw was too narrow to carry your eyes

I could see in between your bones and feel your lies

you sent me metaphorically packing

because of that I stayed

though you were right in a way, I did not belong

call me anything you like or don’t call me at all

you’re cold when I’m hot and hot when I’m cold

sometimes when someone threatens you

you say, okay then, bring it on

and you watch yourself fall down the rabbit hole

next time I’m challenged to a duel, I may hang up my sword

catch the next bus out-of-town

proving ourselves in battle, rarely avoids scars

call me anything you like or don’t call me at all

you’re cold when I’m hot and hot when I’m cold

what makes one person give another everything?

even when they know they will never receive an ounce in return?

do we loathe ourselves that much?

call me anything you like or don’t call me at all

you’re cold when I’m hot and hot when I’m cold

I’m done, breaking my heart over people

least of all you

you who broke me and didn’t even know you did

how absurd we are who give everything

to an empty hanger in an empty wardrobe in an empty chest within our empty arms

call me anything you like or don’t call me at all

you’re cold when I’m hot and hot when I’m cold

and I’m out of here with freedom from your scorn

 

We grind by hand, our own language

16174706_981106892025147_8125778488863439956_nIt was the bees.caught in walls, drunk sweet on fig nectar

humming beneath plaster, sounding like colliding voices

pieces of me calling out on repeat, tapestry in postponement

the last stitch incomplete

seeing her round the corner, raspberries breathing pink air

blue footed like china luminescent in spring water

her eyes hazelnuts over cream, bore into me

we grind by hand, our own language

discovered intimates beneath tables

swapping lace work, scuffing soles

you come on your almond knees, bold and fat cheeked

moss, ivy and peat through high headed daisies

breathing deep whistling distance

keep still, as hush of light rain mists

like sitting children gathering silver, grow vociferous

look

resting on clasped fingers

the turnover of keeping, your strengthening faith

furnishing with still grace, as no-one could contain

the descending stone of woman’s will

but you who held up the world

with one deft movement

a silhouette among gouache doves

rendered in raven, as lovely as permitted

sung by myth and fable, beyond this plain place

where such is the drift of pirouette dream

beholding slim waisted girls gathering fruit

staining their wet mouths in ripened eagerness

Dust

loureedraven9Fingers

outline the space

removed

by you

straining to see

that circle completing

us

it stays beyond your

loosening

a scattering of time and memory

ash as fire

once burned

now shapes are

all we have left

in dust