6.06 / June 2011

Three Poems

On Sunday We Bathed In Rose Water

On Monday we counted each egg
before poking holes in the shells. You poured
the yolk in my mouth and I fed you grits
like you were a baby bird, my tongue
your spork.

On Tuesday we spooned
on the faux bear skin rug and set
the television on fire. Using dust bunnies
for kindling.

Wednesday was the day you cooked
my eggs over medium and we ate snap peas
while playing Sudoku. Your head
became a thimble so you could eat
off my fingernail.

Thursday melted the margarine to Friday
and we washed the Jetta in maple syrup.
Preventing the paint from flaking
like my skin in winter.

It was no ash Saturday when we let the wax
seep onto the end table. A sort of tribute
to lovemaking, lubricant, and the week old
leftovers oozing in our fridge.

Journey Endorses Birth Control

It was the year she turned sixteen twice.
The same year her father came out of the closet,
and the same year the pigeon had a heart attack
in front of a Duane Reade.

She turned sixteen once in the Holiday Inn.
Staring at the ceiling like she was waiting
for the stars to surface. Sixteen and a half in the janitor’s closet
Don’t Stop Believing belted grainy out of the paint-spattered tape player.

It was the same year her brother went gray at thirteen,
and Aunt Linda died from choking on a wasabi pea
while sleep eating. The same year her father started wearing her bras,
and the same year her mother drank white zin while locked in the bathroom.

She turned sixteen and three quarters while giving road head
in Billy’s Thunderbird. The quack of horns a beat to bob her head to
as he leaned back further in his seat, arm dancing outside the window,
giving a thumbs up to the truck drivers.

It was the year she bought a pregnancy test
and Just For Men at the Dollar General.
She dyed her brother’s hair before peeing in a coffee mug.
It was the year she’d try sixteen again
when there was only one pink line instead of two.

There Are No Sandwiches In Heaven

I wanted to make us peanut butter sandwiches in the park
but you said it was too hot

like cancer and pancakes or French bread with margarine
dripping like oil onto the parking lot,

like rain falling from the night sky. If you can’t see
from where it falls, is it really falling? Is it really happening?

If you split my thighs and I don’t permit it, does it count
as lost virginity? Will God allow a burning grave

for me to fall into, like the baking sheet inserted in the
Crematoria kiln. A tower of silence and the birds chewing

on flesh like gummy worms and a heart is nothing more
than a Valentine’s decoration, placed on a welcome mat

but I didn’t invite you in. And the blood is like blood
but blood from a stuffed rabbit

and it’s somehow possible to place it in a beaker
to be examined at a later date, maybe when it’s raining

I can pull the hood over my head and pretend I didn’t.
It is all imagination and the dandelions don’t puke yellow

on my kneecaps. But you like my knees, at least
when I was on them and your hands became gravestones

making my existence heavy and engraved
born in–, died in–, gave up in-

All in the same year and hands. And the peanut butter
didn’t really matter. You weren’t going to eat anyway.

You wanted the grass to grow around my ankles
while my nails collected soil.

If the sun were out would it not feel as painful,
would it somehow count and could I look in the mirror

without mouthing morte and making sure cleavage is hidden
under sweatshirts and my pants are too tight to slip off.

Alexis Pope is a student of English and Creative Writing at The University of Akron in Ohio. She resides in the neighborhood of Highland Square where she writes poems and tiny fiction in her frequently messy apartment. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Staccato Fiction andZaum, along with a few others. When PANK accepted her poems she knew 2011 would be totally awesome.
6.06 / June 2011