Click-Clack

we didn’t do yoga except your feet
on my shoulders & months later

you zip past me with my new lover
on your bicycle      the acacias stink

of memory      you see us arm
in arm on the way to the library

as we used to     too    but when we
kissed was a web spiders clung to

a hunger many legs couldn’t satisfy

 

(originally published in WINK, Winter 2020)

Courier

Delivering packages–
I see names, not
always faces, but you,

I know your name
too well, your face in my
mind a ceaseless rain.

I knock on your door–
your dog barks,
wags his tail

when he sees me
through the window. I do
not stay for a signature.

I walk briskly
to my van and drive
to my next ping,

somewhere deep in
the city, another box
with a stranger’s name

on a different, faceless porch.


(originally published in Uppagus, Spring 2021)

My Barber Says Hello in Public

Often, before a haircut, I make
the joke to a friend– I don’t know
if you’ll recognize me later!

In the chair, the barber holds
scissors, removes my glasses.
His form blurs in the mirror.

At the conclusion of a cut, I
must accept the physical
implications of my new self.

But my friend Kurt once said
in each moment we become
a different person, our atoms

scrambled with each second’s
footstep, our hairs scattered on
the floor– they, too, rearranging.

(originally published in Miranda House Philosophy Magazine, Spring 2021)

Stomach-Something

The growth inside you, you can only
guess exists– the strengthening

malignant allium a tumor blossomed
& when your stomach fails to digest

you leave your house in pain to meet
me at the bar & fuck, you needed a job

with benefits but I, too, lack insurance
& down downers at happy hour. You

tell me nothing solid settles
anymore. What you eat eats you

& I fear, soon, you will not eat.

(originally published in Agapanthus Collective, Spring 2021 – nominated for Best of the Net)

Hot Sauce

You know how much is too much but
you shake the bottle anyway over browned

grilled cheese sandwich and bite in.
The things you think you can get away with–

oh, the tiny fires you’ve stepped across in
the temple of your longing. Little dabs of red

on canvas– the meat of the situation is you’re
taken but, Lord, the flame goes hallelujah blue.

I’m speaking a poetry of pigs. Relationship
as slaughterhouse. Relationship as bacon

you want to slather lust all over.

 

(originally published in Adelaide, Fall 2019)

Engagement

I am not crying   You are

Okay      I am

on the phone with you
out from hungover car
in Columbus Ohio

loud   enough
to traverse     sonic field
flats     green

and potholed concrete
across state line
to Indianapolis Indiana

I am not screaming     Okay

I am screaming     You
walk   a cell phone tower
tightrope listening    repeating

    It is okay to cry

Some things I cannot
deny    This hungover
day sags into night

GPS off     driving loops
around the block
memories the silver ring

around another’s finger

 

(originally published in Scarlet Leaf Review, Fall 2019)

Fashion

Clothes as mushroom mindtrip–
spider silk covers a body.

A wallpaper of lava lamp
transformations – decorate the house

however you see fit. Clown pants. Squirting
roses. Tuxedo coated in gelatin. All art is

political, or none of it. This statement launches
to the topmost window of a towering bank

and bounces deep into the trenches
of my thin, leatherworn wallet.

(originally published in Gingerbread Ritual Literary Journal, Winter 2021)