January 2014 - Comments Off

john henry

Kathryn Henderson '15

I gingham
skirt too light
for february
tights
torn I
cry under
Manhattan
above me rains
dispassionately
I cry
stifled like
every time
a man mans
me
this time
I permit
dispassion
with a man
├ętrange
who loves
camus
surprisingly
his jaw
sickens
me
his jaw bears
bared
memory
buried
I was
a child
a man
cut my hair
without permission
flung me head-
first into
the wall
and told me
not
to cry I
cry now I
fling
myself against
the rock
of memory
underground
I chip
away
until
my locks
are ripped from the scalp
bloody, scalp
empty, scalp
scraped, scalp
mine, I have
no hammer
but this
and let
it stand:
any man
who wants
to see
the other
side
will need
a hammer
I do not
wish him luck
like a child
I cry but
like john henry
I sling and when
the rock erodes
like john henry
my heart bursts
in the dark
train, the bright
cave

Published by: in Issue 1: Fall 2013, Poetry, Volume 70

Comments are closed.