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I stood up, willed for nothing. I looked into this liquid mirror until she
looked back & remembered me holding out the scissors like albatross wings,
this face off frame. It becomes first-hand easy parse & pain, has its hands in
there, in the far & near rib & waist girth measurements I’m familiar with,
the soul-sinkhole that houses these rake feelings. It’s familiar. It’s old family.
What you have once done, common as a warehouse full of flat hand-sized moths
clouding the high windows, keeping the coughed-up quiet. Measurement there.
An appetite for it, for death & wet sex in us, the clear & present danger collaboration
between two or more people. I punchbowl-float on the sea sleep & pray no error there
remains, keeps them family all together in the same room just long to kill a burden you
can still believe in. You can female smudge long enough for. Genetic longing pulls hard at
my ponytail, keeps me out of dusk’s spilled gold & flies in the hayloft corral nightly. I
am as unprecedented as precise as a staircase creak: know this & keep it close to you as
quarreling in the mind: there’s an act like a stone in a drawer, a thought, said ordinary.
Copyright 2019 Elena Karina Byrne
Elena Karina Byrne’s publications include Squander (Ominidawn, 2016).