|this sunrise: sky leaks carmine, the morning star goes skinny-dipping,
then bows out. sand shifts, you must feel it, like time, the wheel turning.
what's that you said? is this about the future? the future: six letters,
two of which i never liked, one ludicrous, the other insolent and vain.
words carry meaning, scratch at the veneer, knock down the shell, coax
out true colours. you cannot be made entirely of water and contempt.
if i said mesoglea, it would mean as much to you as bones to me, alien
structures, inflexible enemies of elegance; you will never know dance.
so you floated, carried away by every whim of the ocean? and were
you beautiful once, like medusa before the god took what he wanted?
i bloomed day and night. now, at the end, i'm dubbed freak of nature,
a gelatinous mess. death tiptoes around me, as if he, too, were repulsed.
your sting is more than bitter, it could outlive you, burn till twilight.
cries would echo across the afterworld, night blue abyss, poseidon's realm.
what do you know of the sea, what of the trident-bearer? go gaze at your
little lights in the sky, puzzle over their patterns, their age-old chants.
i would listen to litanies of fish, stories of sponges, mermaids smitten
with men, your god, but there is no time. will you not leave me your song?
mouths mute, bells silenced by depth, we tentacled poetry beneath the
waves; if i weren't so tired, i'd snake my obituary into this dreary sand.
an opaque language: particles meandering, bubbles blossoming, corals in
swirls. but the sun's getting thirsty. quick, before she drinks your final words.
yours is a strange world, dry and bright and full of clunky noises.
i long to be cradled by currents. tell the whales to sing my requiem.
|Gloved hands take her from me
in a room with silent walls.
Clusters of screams hang in corners,
scarlet and fierce.
A violent artificial sun
burns all hope to pale cinders,
dries up each drop of milk,
eclipses the fish’s face inside me.
I awake from dreamless sleep
to the coldness of everything white:
walls, blankets, the women like corpses
on deathbeds not their own.
A nurse urges me to talk;
her red lipstick offends me.
I crave dark colours, a weeping
winter sky, a black cat’s pelt.
Clutching my bundle of clothes,
I watch blood trickle
from my empty body
and fail to understand.
|The river is quick and quiet:
what does she care for faceless backyards,
history imprisoned in stone.
I try to drown my melancholy,
but she won’t have it, spits it back
in my face.
In narrow alleys, my steps
extinguish their own echo;
a streetlamp tempts me with the promise
of an instant halo,
but I shake my head.
The sound of centuries is in the air,
starved but tenacious, like the
sudden silence of bells.
Even the sky speaks a secret language:
a question for a question,
potbellied letters spelling riddles
towards the west.