Another for the Soil
The skull bubbles
wet. This is how you know your bones are ready for bullet, ready to
unspool red. Your mother warned you of the sun,
you should have stayed inside.
The night is hungry. The ground is hungry & growing teeth to swallow. Everything is hungry,
look around. Vying for your blood which has been laid down to rest too many times.
Your clone is asleep & strung to sky, meaning shot, meaning dead, meaning you don’t need to
read the news to know. You’ve smashed the radio
to parch your eyes rainless. What is expected: your skin.
Eyes shrinking into socket, primitive into cave.
I watch pink fist become catalyst for misfire: What enters the body always masked as mistake. Stop. Shake me until the ground orbits out of axis.
You have been told a lot of things, lessons pulled out of the ocean’s mouth.
A softer decay. Tar jellied skin is what
the siren says, what has taught you time &
time again to tap your feet, blue & red ochre becoming nightclub fog for last dance.
There are more important things than hiding from death, you say, but we both know that it’s not true,
you avoiding highways & basketball courts, you always hearing something in your sleep, clawing for
the hand, pulling at what has already crumbled.
Most hands no longer hands. Your mother
has bought curtains longer than the last pair,
the patterns just as sleepless as the neighbourhood
fences. The walls will not echo if you never shift.
A throat becomes raw if vowels latch on for too long.
Listen, someday the hand will learn its story & we will unlace grief from bandages. It is so easy to slick the heart into history.
Olivia Hu is the Editor-In-Chief of Venus Mag. Her work has been published or forthcoming in Red Paint Hill, Cadaverine, Eunoia Review, Track Four, and more. Her chapbook Ocean’s Children was published by Platypus Press in December 2016.