By: Undone and Divine
I wish your gaze came with subtitles.
You sit, an un-furrowed brow,
As my heap of hair and snot and lip gloss puddle in your palm,
Salty from your evening surf.
I have to stop my lips from telling you I love you,
Fucking tell me first, my eyes plead.
You peer down past the lashes I glued on
Babbling up through my toes
Flowering the bud of my body
And gnarling my arms into outstretched spring branches
Which you bundle like firewood into your chest.
Against the weight of your shoulder, my kindling breaks.
Scraping flesh and muscle
I gasp to say I’m sorry
But you smile and push the splinters deeper with your bitten nail
And whisper, I hope it leaves a scar.
I used to love from the shore,
A toe at a time,
up to mid thigh.
Sometimes letting salt water lap my hip,
Until that errant wave licked my navel,
And grazed my neck,
To the point of no return:
To be pulled under or pushed to shore.
Far away from myself
Against salt and sand and sweat and bone
Deeper into our in between
Out of words and thoughts and the weight of the air we breathe.
Down as you move through every drop of me
Into the darkness from which one of us will not return.
Please, not back to the sand.
Dry and caked with fading memories,
A body no longer my own.
So I stand, while sea air pecks me like a bored lover,
Jealous of dolphins,
While the water begs my toes.
Like a bride toward the altar,
Something old, something new,
Into the blue.
A vow to the undertow,
Whose churl will dance our bodies,
Before it rips our flesh between sky and sea.
I line up, barefoot with dirt caked to my knees,
Before that white building
With dust on its toes
A gust in between where bricks had been laid
A gentle kiss to remind me that I belong in this holy place
White and gold and gilded with God
I am to repent for my sins to a vaulted ceiling,
Musty with decades of torn tears and fingertips on tattered dollars.
I don’t want to give you my faith or fear or dreams or desires.
Your arched brow will distain my lust,
Yet that’s what brings me closest to God.
Placing myself in the hands of a man,
His fingers wrapped around my throat,
He can kill me but he won’t.
He wants to bring me to life,
To tie me so God comes up and through,
Not spilled out through the blood I draw on his chest with my petal pink nails,
Or echoed through my shrieks that ricochet off eggshell stucco walls.
A silent fountain
That cascades over us,
Misting our flames into embers
So that we don’t burn down this entire fucking building.
I fall into you the way I always wanted to fall into God.
She waited until I was asleep,
To silently step from the window,
And scale cracked siding,
Tinny from cheap repairs,
And creaking with hollow must.
To tiptoe barefoot through grass,
Damp from the moon’s kiss,
Toward his crooked smile.
Away from me,
Pursed lips and an arched brow,
Pointed as a lashing switch.
I meant to mold her,
But we broke together,
Bone on skin on blood,
I have betrayed us.
I never knew I was a mean witch.
He dabbed her tears and pulsing wounds,
With wine on his tongue
And haze in his gaze.
How to be gentle with her, when she returns drunk, bruised and alone.
I always tried to drop my pennies gingerly,
Like the good little girl I used to be.
Hovering between my small fingers and a steady gaze,
Soundless and weightless,
Into a bottomless depth,
I had to imagine the whisper of gravity:
A convinced satisfaction.
But you have broken me of myself.
You tip my tears and shrieks and giggles
Into your emptiness, a vast well
Of steady steel.
I clatter against you, echoing as I tumble,
Pelting down your sides,
Our orchestra of flesh and metal.
We are harmonia.
And yet I resist,
Afraid heaving darkness will silence our symphony.
Photo by Justin Rosenberg