A Witch is born out of the true hungers of her time. I am a child of the poisonous wind that copulated with the river on an oil-slick, garbage infested midnight. I turn about on my own parentage. I inoculate against those very biles that brought me to light. I am a serum born of venoms. I am the antibody of all time.
Long After Midnight, Ray Bradbury
I am accused. I dream of massacres.
I am a garden of black and red agonies. I drink them,
Hating myself, hating and fearing. And now the
Its end and runs toward it, arms held out in love.
Sylvia Plath, Three Women: A Poem for Three Voices
it could be worse:
some babies haven’t even tasted milk before
but i’m different,
so spoiled it dripped down my chin like
mommy stay, like daddy
daddy daddy you don’t taste
so good anymore
my head hit the floor
parts of me turned red & then
pink, blood & cream, i’m a sticky sweet strawberry
cake moon orbiting
the planet we forgot to visit
on this one girls get
held instead of hit
& how loud
do i have to scream your name before
it becomes four letters instead of the sound
of me burying my own body?
i’ve always been good about dying early,
i used to be quiet about it
used to not tell our secrets,
used to sit with my mouth shut on the edge of a hospital bed
or in a home filled with children no one wanted
with the girls who grew up to have children
they never wanted
& i gave birth
to a crown of thorns i don’t need
you can tell i’m rotten even without it,
can go to hell & back like a bad
queen any day of the week
& i do & i bring you
photographs of heaven looking cold & scary
from where it’s so warm
i fall asleep
i grew up in dark space,
pearls do the same
if you find something precious in a place
where even the sun chokes & sinks
& not even god
The most romantic thing a human being can say
to another human being is Let me help you vomit.
No human being has ever said this to me
& I keep going to god too clean as though god
is frightened of muddy feet. If I am missing
a hairpin I don’t go at all. Please describe
your vomiting; it is like a psalm for me
a place where wilderness might be new.
Other people’s dirt makes a lovely frock.
Grant I be forgiven in the gush.
Melissa Broder, “Waterfall”
You stand in a dark room and grow a tree in your chest.
The color pink is your national anthem.
You have fled the burning city, but your pocket smolders.
He bats his eyelids and dust flies.
You are a well trying to quench its own thirst,
a tiger licking its bloody paw.
Karen Finneyfrock, “The Crush,” published in City Arts
Your love has passed through me and now I feel my mind something like an opal, that is, full of strange uncertain hues and colours, of warm lights and quick shadows and of broken music.
We come upon the body of a whale, a fresh beaching.
It smells like a thousand fishes.
I crawl in on the carpet of its tongue, seeking the injury out.
Outside, you cough and look away as I squint
through the eye at you. I dig into the room
its ribs make and squat in the warm gloom. The heart,
a chandelier, hangs down, ringed with veins. Here and there
the skin has been thinned by hermit crabs,
letting in the light like a stained glass window with blood red panes.
I lie down on the bed of its liver as the tide fills the body,
each wave, higher.
from Frances Justine Post, “Self-Portrait in the Body of a Whale”
Now I’m on the roof
sitting on the edge
with my legs out
that my shoes will fall
or I will fall
but it’s okay.