For them

I cut holes in my heart on the regular

or rather I let the beasts in with their knives.

The headlines read and the slicing begins —

viscera and pink coming to life with red deep like roses,

like angry cheeks.

If I cry who will it help?

And if I fight who will win?

And if I just hold their names inside my mouth,

will anyone remember?

After the last notes are sung

on the dusty instrument of a tired throat,

where will they go?

I just want to hold something soft

whose heart matches the rhythm of mine.

I just want to curl up into something feathery

and drift away to that place that choirs sing about.

Or maybe I just want my words to fill the space with the voices

that wish to be heard.

Maybe I just want to be one of them old negro spiritual songs.

Tell Mary not to weep

Tell Martha not to moan

I’m goin’ on down to Jordan

To wash clean this old ragged soul.