December 2016 - Comments Off

Kameryn Carter

Unraveling

1

I leaned into crazy
as any Protestant
would: shamefully,
slowly, lips pressed
in a line. I count
the nights like this,
sweat-stuck to the
floor, silent and supine.

I’m so undone I sob
into latte I peel denim
from my skin I lay still
on linoleum I feel so cool.

Outside wind licks at the lake
and I imagine myself stomping
rocks into smoke. Understand,
once I was so light

2

In therapy, seven Kleenex
boxes offer their bodies—
eager as any man.
I decline.

3

This body betray this body self
destruct this body reflex this body
sick this body this body bloodthirst

4

I say I am fine and the lie
falls to my lips and lay there.
I forget where I am. My doctor
has a silly name. I think myself
a feral thing licking its wounds
in the dark until it is no longer thirsty.

Letter Home

Football season
and everything
prepares its body
for unthinkable
chill, everything
making mulled wine
in the upstairs shower

How goes dad
how go you

The wind ices your lips
and calls your maiden name

Mother: there are
so many things
to take and be
taken by
(a floorboard
for example)

Sometimes I am eating
a salad and nearly die
over the quality of its
lettuce O Mother,
it throws me
truly, I am always
being thrown

About Nothing

I’ve been pruning in a shallow
bath for days, slicking sardines
with flesh black pepper down
my throat, chasing them
with bathwater, soapsweet.

When I was young, I drew scribbles
on the wall and named them Woman
or Fruitfly or Sugargrain and things
were what they were because I named
them. Now, I call the sickle scar on my
thigh moon and it is still a scar.

How many names has this body
been given? Beastgirl, Firstborn,
Brainsick, Black

Sunlight flits atop the sardine can
and settles in the fold of my stomach,
on the ledge of my clavicle. The drain
sucks at water between my feet. Even
nothing has a name.

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