Category: Illness

BAD BONES

written march 2017
granada, spain

bad bad bones,
abandoned in the
sand and
choked white on
blistered dry
heat and yellowbrown
land below
our cracking spackled
feet thank
god agave
is given to grow
here sprawling
like the splatters
of spleens and
splooge all
spliffed up splied
out sick and sad
severed fingers on
the floor pointing
south and north and
west and
west and
east and
southeast and
east and
north
again

TUESDAY

itches i can’t name
all over this broken
thing all tattered up
and covered in holes
the itch means healing
but i can’t tell the new scars
from the old ones
anymore,
every day i stain something
else with my blood,
the pale gaunt face full
of larvae like a nervous addict,
which i am, and was, and will be,
til sliver by sliver with dirty nails
i tear apart the rest of me and
pick to pieces the remains still
searching for something
anything
of value

UNHINGED 

spit them out, these wasted days and wet-green nights rising up from your esophagus to greet against anyone’s will your
lovers and your sisters and your friends and your parents make them
worry for you but never too much just enough to catch a whiff of the smoldering
human brains on stone tiled floors where
the
cold gets in so easy feel it creeping up the carnage contaminated by the time
it grabs your feet and legs to drag you under
i’m okay, i’m okay — you’re shoveling shouting reaching out to grab hold of whatever’s in reach
creamy rose pink with green sparkles dribbles thick makes you feel
safe watching feel the grip slip this is how we
fight our wars with pink with glitter with ooze like
crying all that bile from your eyes the sticky
worms running playground drills up and down your throat
red rover, red rover, why don’t you come over?
red used to scare you always creeping in or up
more often out
that drip drip down your shaking knees that
seeping out the gashes in your stomach like a watermelon past its prime now just remember– don’t eat the seeds, you can’t afford for anything to grow inside you, and neither can the anything– that environment is uninhabitable
for living things

SINNER

read the back of the
label: it will tell you
your sins for the day
but there will be no
advice for repenting provided. do
it yourself with slimy digits
coughing over the toilet. be
discreet: the sound of a
splintering facade is harsh on
young ears and of course
apart from slim you must
also be strong.

LUNGS

they come crawling
like clawed children
in hallways, in day – light
and night – light,
the worst ones of course
in the

dark

everywhere
hands grasping in
from the walls and
you will love the way they feel
when they
touch you

this place isn’t safe
for lovers or dancers
or birthers or swimmers
questionable even
for saints

build an altar
get a stepstool
squeeze my
waist and burn
this whole
place to ashes i

want

to inhale you
like fiberglass dust
in my lungs all
blue and purple
dressed with flowers
anointed with
venom and tea tree

oil

i found some leaves
on the ground in
lisbon on these
steps in the
rain and the darkness
made them greener

they looked like lungs creased down the
middle so i picked one up and
held it to my chest and
inhaled

LEAVE HIM SLEEPING

though he may watch you just that way
with narrowed eyes, a bitten lip
the taste of metal, scent of sweat
though he may say it perfectly
I want to make you bleed —

leave him sleeping.

though he may twist you
pin the hands and bite and growl
gouge you out just so
though he may tell you
you are my only need —

leave him sleeping.

when he tells you you are wrong
but does the same himself
when he tells you not to hurt
but draws the blood himself
when he tells you pretty lies
but keeps the truth for himself

leave him sleeping.

and when you hear her crying
though hidden she may be
clutching at your arms, your teeth, your brain
and begging listen — listen please,
don’t go forth unblinking, turn and
see her, take her with you

but leave him sleeping
leave him sleeping
leave him be.

3

cle an
the earth beneath your fe et, the very soil
full
of your shit and your blood and your
ancestors’ bones ground to mea l

food for maggots worms and vermin
crawling infesting your floorboards, your fingernails, your eye  sockets
your
workplace, the schools of your chi ldren
little joyful bundl es infeste d
smears

grubby markings
finger pads no two the same making everything dirty
un-bleached un-scrubbed
un-polished un-white, the filth
you see  their dark stains
black flecks blotched where neutral beige would be nice r,

got them trained
so small already hate all that they see
each fleck a flaw, loss of wor th
not light, not pure, not whi te enough
take a k nife to it and slice it off
a vacuum hose to suck it out
p urge the blackness
cl ean

DAY ONE

day one and there are riots
day one and there’s spray paint and face
paint and tar and feathers making reasonable threats, it’s
day one and my loved ones chose this, backs
turned on humanity, decency sliced throat-to-balls
and stapled to the wall above the hearth,
fire broiling warmly, tan calentito,
like flames on a blistering cross in a field at midnight,
it’s day one and they don’t feel fear