Speaking of Serial Killers
I’ve married the square of skin
described beneath your cheekbone.
I am drawing a map of the scar on your elbow,
your village grin, your yellow eye.
I dance like a heathen in the dustbowl of your indifference.
I will tape the purple crescents of your bitten fingernails
along the spines of library books and wrap myself
in the drum skin of your voice until I choke on the fibers
of your excellent English.
I will stretch my hand down your warm tobacco throat,
comb its sides with a piece of clear glass, and tell you
that I’m feeling for superstitious tissue. That I’m feeling
for algae blooms and cancers
and the poisonous spores of my affection.
The Woman With No Face
The woman with no face
haunts the sugar mill
and the cane field behind my house.
She likes to sit on the smokestack of the refinery
and comb her hair.
I hear her white feet stamp
the dry red dirt, and her curious laughter
trapped in her throat.
She drowns a boy in the irrigation ditch
Her fingers swim across his dead face
like a school of pale fish.
She presses his eyelids closed with her thumbs
and twists the bridge of his nose
until it breaks and bleeds over her hot palms.
She touches his mouth
his lips, his young teeth.
She hooks her fingers into a notch behind his jawbone
At night, I see her
walking under my clothesline. She is
trying on my dresses, holding their necklines
against her long throat – as if to prove
we are the same size.
She will turn to my window
and bend her arm at the elbow
as if to smile. As if she knows
that when I meet a boy,
I have her hot palms;
my fingers are her school of fish.
my heart is a vacuum,
and when I meet a boy,
I pay attention to his mouth.