In my dream, wet as an oil spill, I sweat drops
of you, speak in fever gag tongues, tape
pearling at my mouth, sticky aphrodisiac
pulling the skin from my lips. I blow you kisses
like fly paper. In return, you blow oilskinned
harpoons into my ears, glinting nothing words that
spin in my head til I’m buzzing and blurry as
a ceiling fan,
and you’re the eye of the storm,
a poised fork, stalking the whites of my eyes.
from Lil’ Wayne’s “Pussy Monster,” rearranged in order of frequency.
for flu food bowl stood no more soup remove spoon drink juice salt pepper heard well cool job blow bet mic check how don’t have clue but find show tell lift top lip smell swallow spit every time goes get call Dracula vacuum catfish fish cat tuna smack flip spatula lil runnin so tackle baby be worm apple butt go backin front throw black Acura been this game actress told action cameras lookin hope yeah where know rain hurricane imagine did pearl talk jump here hi taste taste what what cold cold suck suck hot hot blew blew there there one one two two still still put put face face reason reason why why mama mama need need stay stay gotta gotta survive survive let let up up throw throw on on words words better better comin comin could could tongue tongue with with over over over out out out she she she eat eat eat feed feed feed walk walk walk got got got wanna wanna wanna make make make make do do do do your your your your just just just just when when when when in in in in if if if if can can can can I’ma I’ma I’ma I’ma it’s it’s it’s it’s I’m I’m I’m I’m alive alive alive alive of of of of of cause cause cause cause cause now now now now now her her her her her I’ll I’ll I’ll I’ll I’ll like like like like like like a a a a a a that that that that that that that that girl girl girl girl girl girl girl girl girl my my my my my my my my my monster monster monster monster monster monster monster monster monster to to to to to to to to to to to to and and and and and and and and and and and and and it it it it it it it it it it it it it me me me me me me me me me me me me me the the the the the the the the the the the the the the the the the the the you you you you you you you you you you you you you you you you you you you you you you I I I I I I I I I I I I I I I I I I I I I I I I I I I la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la la pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy pussy
TOO MANY TRUTHS
I’m in love with a broken
glass. I’m in love with a broken
city. I’m in love with a city shuddering
at my feet. What I mean is that there was
a man on the ground at the bus station.
What I mean is I didn’t give my seat
to an old woman once. What I mean is
sometimes I have a seat and others don’t.
One time I fell in love with people
I called other. One time I tried
my hardest and I still got laid off.
Everyone was so sorry. I’m sorry
for being on the other side
of other. One time a white man
yelled about how sorry he was
for being white. One time I fell in love
with a white man. One time I lost
a different man. One time I
lost a woman too, but different.
One time a different woman
built my body inside her body.
Then my body left hers.
Then pockmarked body, then body riddled
with jokes, body tried to hide.
Body left home and rode off toward
college. Body studied anything it wanted.
Body looked at other bodies
at the bottom of the hill. Once my body
fell in love with a hill.
Once my body claimed it had
a puppet master. What I mean is
I’m in love with my own god.
What I mean is I spent my money
on slavery one time. Or a million
one times. What I mean is
all these things are true. What
I mean is all these things
must mean. Once there was a poem
that claimed it had a soul. Once there
was a poem. Once there was a poem
I walked through the first boy like a pool of water churning with living things I almost remembered from dreams. Prehistoric conversations, fetal creatures that recognized me from when I floated upside down in a dark place long ago. I could see my face reflected in him but was distracted by the storm below, many-legged secrets calling themselves by my name. The universe doesn’t speak to me anymore, he said, it just mutters under its breath once in a while. The boy who taught me to believe in omens began to smell like an old pond, dead ends bubbling to the surface.
So I waded back out, still wet of him, too afraid to wring him out of my clothes in case I was wrong.
I walked through the second boy like a city garden, a place to close the gate into, away from the crashing symphonies of a sinking ocean liner, glass and last-ditch confessions flying everywhere. We disappeared among the cabbages, each leaf waxy and familiar as our mothers’ elbows. In the pantry of the earth, everyone thought in the same language, the common bodily knowledge of dirt and sun. But when I passed him a fig of me to sink his teeth into, it dropped with a sound like a long blank stare, and I dug for worms and the howls of writhing things, but found only seeds, half-sprouted and too holy between my fingers.
So I walked out, backward, kissing each bed and leaving the gate open in case he wanted to call me back.
I walked into the third boy like a house that had been there all along, wondering how long the porch light had been on when I fell sloppily against the doorbell and tumbled in. Now I’m standing in the front hall, tracking mud on the carpet and afraid to touch couches once familiar to my easy collapse. I look for my face among the picture frames, wondering if he’ll ever come downstairs,
and whether I want him to find me like this: smelling of compost, covered in algae, dripping pond and garden all over his empty answers.