This Shining Fever

Tape A
i have numbered the hairs you left behind on my body
and ascribed them names, and taken them to flame
your handprints i drank; they burned my throat
and you grew, a twisted root in my chest you
harden and cool like melted wax

Tape B
i caught my hip on a log, the sharp wood snagging my bare skin
I found algae underneath my toenail the next morning and one long, silver hair wrapped around my pinky finger — He cut off my circulation, circled the base of my spine
a whisper “I like it here,”

Tape C
a doe, split straight down the nose and scattered on the edge of the highway
her head cocked saying
“you are one of the valuable things.”

Tape D
dull and red, his tongue a pool of murky triggers
his hands a loose flood they clanged over my ribs his fingers howled
through my hair “no no be careful wait i am languid but i — i am not
yours to bend”

Tape E
This is a flicker, now I never paid much attention to the sun
until he blotted it out with a tissue and scarlet it dripped from the corner of his mouth into me there is nothing pretty on this floor but the blood of the sun
that seeped from beneath me to settle on his amber belly
was something

Tape F
He was outside, cracking walnuts
with a hammer, the moon snapped and the blank fruits flickered,
his face a rock-cradle, a rosebush
it brushed my cheeks until they bled, the motions of our talking hands
a worried chainsaw in black water

it would have been too easy; but he showed me his pulpy organs
and I held them in my naked fingers tongued the sinew and the splintered bone
and like a bullet inching open an egg
he entered me

so when i find my body alive, again, in a swamp or a supermarket,
I will mourn my lost skin cells

(they litter his body, my hair weaves silk on his floor my salt left my pores
to mingle in his)

Tape G
The zeal of your body has eaten me up.
my belly blush, your belly bush (when one has everything to write about
the pen bleeds dry the imprints of your tongue
have crystallized on my peaks

Tape H
you dug the pit out of a peach with a cigarette
i tried to reach the body (my body) — but you got there first

Tape I
I levitated above his chest, his seance mouth — my lips are only good for blowing smoke through cobwebs
he tripped a wire in my head.

Tape J
pinky trailed over cat scratch the drag of a claw
over a deck of tarot lips curled
around glass the colour of the spilled
sinew on the porch
where your tongue flitted around my mouth
and you held me
where goodbye was the crunch of bones in a black cat’s mouth
the taste of cigarettes on fingertips and a peacock flame
you lost the softness in your voice but the gooseflesh that grazed my breasts
in the dark finds its way out the window in the basement shower room
when we touch


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