Isabella, and what she happens to like

No Roots – Alice Merton

I dislike

their slow bloom across months of earthen

landscape, unfurling in petal-like formation,

slow soldiers marching on, threading through

slow flesh for slow justice

i dislike the unclean cut –

scar tissue makes the talons itch

(it must be the time they take)

i like the kill that’s quick

so it’s dead by yesterday

i like my wounds invisible, brutal, swift

a slashing tongue against an unsuspecting lip

i like my battle to be won at its letter-cutter tip –

a fingernail seeking the pulse in the skin of your thigh –

a papercut promising to bleed you dry

a dagger cutting cords with intent to cauterize

i like my blade to be bloodless when it finds its slit

i like my edge to be crafted silent silver moonlit

i like no red drops of evidence

lining single file for anyone to find

who are you again?
let me taste my blade
for memory of your name

Any eagle can tell you:
everything has a jugular, and
the dead are wordless.

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Moonlit Memory

Waking. I awoke today in some moonlit memory of limbs, my own and yours, somewhere beyond the dissolution of space and time, in some strange starlit reflected pool of soul and spirit and star shard and cipher. You, seeping into my pores, our hands slipping through one another.

I awoke today in water, a gathering of raindrops between my thighs. Here you were, closer than close, somehow traversing those hidden liquid channels of sleep and dream. Where did we fly last night, shedding even the cloth of skin?

Morning.Take a step of a kind inside me. Remind me who we were beyond the body.

Night. Reach for me without hesitation. Uncoil in my lap. Remember home. Remember the space where skin thins into the sukoon of spacetime. Unwind the wounded muscle. (I know it hurts, like a bruise sometimes. I know it feels dead sometimes.) Let my hand travel to your heart beating truth inside its cage of bones. Tremble like an arrow’s strength before release. Sink into softness.

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Journey

Honey

these honeyed conversations

sparkle on my lips; I confess

I drink them like a forgotten memory

wine-like, full-bodied and rich, its heaviness

is in your limbs, its weight, a tender

balance to that sweet nectar of words

flooding

“let your throat open to the word”


Day

into hazy summer view, a ray of

recollection shimmers like gossamer wings

fluttering in all my softest parts


Night

I rub that dark silken space between us, stretching

across the many waters of distance –

when you pray

when I bathe

these droplets speak to one another

shimmering in the language of moonlight

Skin

dress me just in your words, let

my satin-sweet liquid laughter alight

like light against your ear, hold me in the

gentlest corner of your eye as

we press sweet and

sharp into softness sweet

am I not you

are you not me

Gift

there is no love but love

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Turiya

habituation. transformation. transmutation.

blank eye. white eye. a rock dissolves, now dust in your palm. between your fingers, metal hisses, metal misses the step of liquification. metal rises, as ash, as vapour. gone are those older porous pools of molten heat, remember writhing somewhere in them for a decade, a century, a millennia, the dissolution of seconds against the face of a clock, of skin into heat. gone are those liquid borders between gold icebergs, alien and unearthly and pristine and the clarity of atmosphere, above. enough heat bypasses liquification, those imperfect glittering diamonds, large as pyramids, melting into a sky wavering into golden fog-like heat.

there is a place beyond thought; held like a lens against the backdrop of memory is that place beyond waking, beyond dreaming, beyond sleeping, beyond silence, beyond spirit.

here, a mountain melts into air,
ripples as it crumbles into an atmosphere
that tastes of gold and earth;
a new sky to rivals the clouds that shrink against the alien landscape
a sky that grows over a newly-forming planet

here, a lens against a thousand suns opens
amber eye. scarlet eye. there is no memory against the backdrop of a night without dawn. Night sky. night eye. arrow, atmosphere, mountains of gold, silver, and iron. time, age, era. a face, a world, a universe.

ash.

sublimation.

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She asked for nothing

Offer Me nothing, she says, twilit smoke in morning sun trickling a whisper against my eardrum. can you do that. can you offer nothing. no words of praise or fear or sorrow or love. no promises or confessions. no guilt no pleasure no shame. no fruits no honey no ambrosia no poison no milk. no coffee bean of a thought or an idea. no limbs no skulls no blood no fury no compassion no kindness no ill will no good will. no wrongdoing no rightdoing. no condo in downtown Toronto no sidewalk tent city no pimple in the dimple of an ant no burj or CN or shanghai tower no petra no pyramid no taj. no sacred temple no burial ground. no grave and no golden thread of life in everything nor the hollow strange unvisitable space between them. no victory no defeat.

A chuckle. A laugh.

No laughs no tears no skin no organ no soul no marble planet no starlit sky no hubble telescope no GN-z11 no MACS1149-JD1 no EGSY8p7 no A2744 YD4 and certainly (a chuckle, a laugh), no Milky Way.

no, not even a prayer.

So can you offer nothing.

“In all fairness,” I said, “I didn’t quite realise that what’s you meant.”

The laugh is outrageous.

One could call it a cackle.

All right. How about the opposite then. How about I offer you nothing.

“What would that feel –

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how to lose a guy in 10 days

  1. bombard him with furious excellent horrifying prose
  2. hang from a meat hook in a room by an artery and a small flap of skin in your throat
  3. visit graves
  4. dissolve flesh
  5. regrow stone
  6. place your broken fingers outside your door as windchime and warning
  7. tell them you’re a witch
  8. lose interest
  9. return to your alien planet
  10. kill a marble

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Seekrit Bloggo Saturday

This blog is where my unspeakable thoughts find a place to live/remain/die. Like, the next time I am in bed with someone, and they ask me what’s on my mind, they are getting a recitation of either “and death shall have no dominion” or “she bitches about boys” and there is no inbetween.

The irony ofc is anyone hearing “she bitches about boys” likely will need interpretation support.

Anyway I can’t tweet this or fb this so here it lives. What do writers with other lives *do* with all the thoughts they cannot write into their everyday? Do we all have seekrit blogs?

I think about all the misery I could have avoided if I just relied in the truth of my own experience. Doubt is other people and doubt is hell. If you ever love like I love, it is always unconditional. Four years of trying to condition it just led me to a fiery expanse of a poem – four years and then Dylan Thomas. At that point of loving, there is no choice but to accept it. It is what it is. Stars at elbow and foot. Death really does have no dominion. The next time you ask yourself if it was real, try to tarnish it and see how far you get. If it’s still there, raw and pearl rubbed and as perfect in inception and even brighter, congrats, you discovered how to love unconditionally.

Ok, you ask. Ok but this person isn’t in my life? Do I just…have this now? Yup! That’s it! And may you find it again with less pain or expectation of reciprocity or building a future. Let trust fly out the window, let reciprocity escape. All you can do is love. If you value that enough, then unconditional love is more than enough. If you have screamed and raged for years “why won’t this feeling die?” Congrats! You have stumbled and bumbled into a place where death has no dominion! Oops! But also yay? That’s it, folks. Call it a wrap. There may be others as well you feel this way for. None of it means a life together is necessarily possible. But hey you barely sank never mind rose again. And now you have stars at elbow and foot, after the clean bones, gone – maybe, you think, maybe this ridiculous feeling will outlast your existence too.

And, if they don’t inspire you to recite dylan thomas in their ear like a prayer, like an oath – there is always marilyn hacker, waiting to land like an axe in some “high-strung, well-hung, penurious boy, not knowing what he’d get, could [have been] more generous.”

If I leaned into love that night, I would have believed every word he said about why this could not work. Maybe that is the better way: let cheaters live, let the cowardly have their cowardly ways, believe the lies from a place of love that does not care about the debts and balance and this for that and tit for tat.

Reciprocity is dead but love is not. Some monsters you just can’t kill. Draw a monster. Why is it a monster. Because I can’t kill it. I am tired now but happy too. My love is a monster and I am ok with that.

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Destroyer of worlds

Sometimes you want to write a poem and realise some other person has already done it – has already taken the meat of what you want to write and thrown it against a page, like a map of your bones on xray film. Last night I felt made of stars, the expanse of space inside me. So today is for Dylan Thomas, fiery and Welsh and a “roistering, drunken and doomed poet” at least as per wiki. I hope everyone meets someone they find impossible to stop loving after they are gone, by death or by the mundane mutiny of life. After heartbreak and all the graves we build inside ourselves, after numbness and fatigue and the impossible tiring resilience of continuing on, after the rage and the sorrow, after trying again, after suspicion and effort and sorrow again, after all of it, it just….remains, like twin suns inside each eye, aging you and deepening whatever depth in gaze you have now acquired. I hope everyone finds a love they cannot kill. I hope killers of love find love they cannot kill. I hope these skilled murderers like me find a love that kills death. A love beyond the body. A love beyond the other. A love beyond oneself. If someone were to ask me now if I still was in love with every lover I have ever loved, the answer is an unwounded yes devoid of hesitation. In the night sky last night, I felt a night flower unfurl its petals and stretch its hidden tendrils across spacetime. If a new lover asks me what’s on my mind as we curl around one another in some corner of some petal of some hidden corner of my story yet to come, and I already love them in some strange way, I would recite in their ears “and death shall have no dominion”.

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Apsara


Thursday cabernet
plum-wine colour line
twilit and violet
autumnal sunset ripe –
I meant to ask you
what did my lips taste like?

Don’t worry about me;
I don’t worry about you
I just smile – maybe you’re smiling somewhere too

I think you’re just some
summer fruit to taste awhile
some thyme to while away
to rub between my fingerprints
unseasonal yet berry-like
maybe too unreasonable in winter
for fairy-types like me

I rise rosé, on my day,
draped in a cloud
against the rising sun – its rays
press against my whispers, I have tasted
dawn at my lips, drunk light
at daybreak, and this midnight
memory of your slender hips –
well they just make me

smile
like the devil

I’m made of summer
festivals and fairy
lights and chocolate
and wine at night

I remember my butterfly magic
pink tongue peek flit slip flick

flesh warmed by twin temple flames
No need to wait-
don’t think I need to keep a
cloud aside for you,
where I’m from, the sky is blue
where I’m from, the sky is mine and true
where I’m from, my heart is red like berries
red like the devil’s chosen hue

the details are in the body
the details are in the tally
the details are in the fruit –

so I would have, in the river
I could have, in the bath
I might have by the fireside,
on pelts or by the pool –

but don’t you worry about me;
I don’t worry about you
I just smile – maybe you’re smiling too


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Second Craft

Jar of phalanges, finger bones
in oil and stone, potion for a
better home, better night
better past, fossil heart
pick up an index, dip it in latex,
become an escapist,
rewrite a timescape, taste
the powdered thoughts sitting against
the memory of future spells
and fluttering of fallen bells, cracked and
crushed and filled with the sunstained
kaleidoscope window glass pane
we are and we are naught and

crosses are and we are not

we are and we are naught and

crosses are and we are not

we are

eat a pistachio, save the shell
make a necklace of tiny bells
and seashells and stones skipping
against the shore all by themselves
in the wind and in the water
in the dream you had tomorrow
time delivered here by letter,
letter by letter day by day
year by year, throat by tear
there by here, hope by f-

irst, and thirst by desert
oasis grains and golden
summer, apples from
pirate; tongue from quicksilver
powdered words stirring against
the memory of future appellations
and fluttering of constellations,
sunstained and starlit twain
dust tendon leather strapped
bitten swords deep to dermis
diamond to bone,
cut a knife, against the marrow
love enough to hold the sorrow
love enough to love again
kaleidoscope window glass pane

we are

second wind
second sight
second craft
second light

 

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