stir

the road crawls into the darker distance

streetlights each a blinding eye

later now the sky is plush with blue

such nights when screams of all kinds 

come worming through the glass

and the air is stirred incessantly by trees

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Digging

I start digging, using my hands like the front paws of a dog until they become the front paws of a dog. Brown earth rolls in clumps around me, soft wet brown, darkening the deeper I go to bring it up.

I heave the earth out of itself again and again; sometimes in the dark my paws hit something other than earth, something hard like bone, sometimes round and indeterminate, sometimes soft, pulsating and shot through with veins, like the flesh of a worm, but without the wriggle.

When I hit such things, I pull at them until the earth lets go, and I throw them blindly behind me, away from me.

They are things I do not need, do not want to need, and there are handfuls of them.

My claws rip them from the earth, I cannot help it. They come up, but I cannot deal with them now.

I need to see them disappear, and I keep digging as they fly over my shoulders, trailing a heavy veil of earth into the dark behind me.

Rip them out. Rip out the parts that want my attention, that glisten with seductive gloss, splaying the flesh that needs more from the world than the tired earth can give.

I dig and my paws are numb with earth; with what the earth does to them.

You, past person person past, lie expectant in my wet black earth, your traits mummified and meaningful in a way they never really were. I dig into you, through you, send you flying: I know that if I look too closely at you I will slow myself down, slow my digging, and I will think that everything I dig out is something I need.

What I need is to keep digging, to dig for the part of me worth saving, worth uprooting and moving into different soil. The part of me that will agree to live and grow in different soil.

not a bubble.

for George

 

this intimate object, which is also a place,

which is also a network of shivers and calls between us –

when i compare it to an egg, i’m not saying

i want to be the one asleep in it.

don’t want either of us asleep in this.

resting: yes

but we both know the inside of an egg is for growing

which is what i hope for.

 

on the inside, the egg it isn’t as you imagine

it isn’t yellow for the most part, but

that which is alive shows up

in pink and red and orange pulses

and the occasional darkness of a vein

somewhere, there is an eye, and when it rises

we don’t question its place –

it is there so it can all continue. 

 

this is what i want: the pulsing, merging each day,

the appearance of things that make sense.

 

not the dead thing cracked

stiff and unfulfilled

clean round white and yellow on a plate

hardened bubbles on the edge scarred

from the struggle against a violent oil

 

i don’t want us on a plate

i want the possible, the wet and messy vein looking in

through the impossible gap in the shell

 

when i say our bed is like an egg it’s just

in terms of cartoon colours, simplified.

but to simplify is to deaden, sometimes.

 

what i mean is what’s missing: us

in the laid-out emptiness, ready

to be wrapped, given pulse,

and grow from each other’s wing.