7.08 / August 2012

Two Poems


What happened is the thing grew tired as snow &
like all good blood, stopped.

What I am trying to tell you is my excuse.

I don’t mean to mine any bones but there is no leaving without taking & naming without
the way my head felt when I said language should be violence the way my
tongue felt when I pulled it out of itself & gave it its own brain the way my feeling
felt when we sat in separate rooms close enough to hear a sigh

If you do not tell the story sitting on your throat
If you are not sorry

There is too much good weather.
Virginia is a terrible state to break things in, to make your head
the best china & smash, to not to fight the slippery lessenings.

When you tell yourself just because this
When you fill yourself with space
When you lie through your fingers

What happened
was you pulled yourself strand by strand
spaghetti from boiling pot,
what happened was you grew this tremendous appetite what happened was you grew a
whole new set of shining teeth you grew you grew.

Rapunzel Before Her Escape

The moon has always been a hieroglyph
of her troubles. She wraps herself in blonde braid-coils,
makeshift blanket wool-scratchy,
& gazes into that hopeless hunk of light.
She has been fasting. Rapunzel’s fingers have grown thinner
& she feels a pride in this, the child’s joy
in learning its actions can make change
visibly. But she is not a child
& some prince down there
is calling for her hair
& if only she knew how to speak
at least one language of air,
she would give just about anything
to lift herself & disappear
into a weightless ribbon of atmosphere.
Rapunzel feels dangerous. Rapunzel
lets down her hair & wishes
to be the kind of woman
that eats the head of her mate.

By the time you read this, Ruth Baumann will live in Memphis, TN, where she will be attending the University of Memphis' MFA program & learning to like barbeque. You can find her work in The Dirty Napkin, Word Riot & Toad The Journal... & other places if you hunt.
7.08 / August 2012