you tell me you’re a cannibal,
that’s fine.

I’ve been around.
I’ve dated men
plenty of times:
saved their leftovers,
moved their crossword puzzles, watch,
socks from the floor,
ignored their predacious attacks on my
I’m proud to say I’ve adjusted
to many morose habits before.
in fact,

my newest craze is
(that means self-cannibalism,
someone tells him)
find the trauma and just swallow
another old neg or two,
a curse word, a punch directed at the wall,
a public critique of  an outfit or body part
or everything at once.
a light strangle, a light
choke in the sheets;
a little sexual coercion to get me roped and
in heat.
(I’m ready for this)

                                       that means you were tired but wanted it

sometimes the spleen is replete with blockages
and I just feast on past rapes
until I’m obese with past places
that rocked me gently to sleep

                                                  I was tired but wanted it

like a noose,
but worn tastefully.

                              that means privately and quiet
veins swamped with
“honey, smile!” and “whore.”
my sacral remembers every single score
of every man that touched me while I was
peacefully sleeping in my inebriation,

                         that means deserved
and every man that grabbed me on the subway car
and every boy that rubbed me as a little girl
and every man that watched me hang myself
before he would remove his dick to get
the law involved.

                           I’m the law
and I’ve dined on my own tongue—
loyal and quaking
rushed with recollection and
shaking prologues
for so long,
even a yawn at the wrong time causes her to bloat
in ignominious retreat,
that it might be fun to have a little help
disappearing completely

        no, no, you sit, I’ll stand, I’ve taken up too much space anyhow
if we both get started
there may be nothing left of me
by dawn to hold onto
or photograph and paste all over your
own wall,
or fuck,
intimidate in alleyways

                mind the rope there
or ignore.

and wouldn’t that be something
kind of new for you,

“you up?”


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