Slipping into the looking glass, honey poured
reverently from a tarnished spoon into warmed tea, I feel
the ripples of glass reverberate against
and across my skin, up mountains, descending
valleys, through bracken. Almost like the wind,
humming through my hair and fingers,
my reflection augments the sound of my voice
as deeper I slip. Toes, thighs, waist. Submerging
the oldest song into an unknown catechism,
words blending with words immemorial. Chest,
neck, mouth. As the glass reaches my lips, I open
and partake, my reflection swirling
into the darkness of my own self, and the words come,
without compulsion from the deep: an echo
in the half-light. A hymn without refrain.



I failed to mention how I loved
the color of the sky

the day my neighbor passed
into unambiguous sleep. She went quietly,
they say. Like a muted trumpet or a paper


Insatiably yours,
my canary in winter,
perching mid-sentence.


Again in Spring I Cry

Brick lifted upon brick, forcing together the clay
to force the enemy out. To keep him
out and gone forever.

He speaks the words, the last words,
and my eyes like candles shrink
and diminish under the flame in the pit
of his volcanic sky. And he, my darkness,
sinks and burns with blue sorrow
into the pit beneath my waxen eyes. His serpentine
hands slithering through my hair,
constricting around my throat chest waist. Metallic

against my petalled skin.

I lift clay to mouth, wetting and molding. Brick
drying against mortarless brick eternally. To the end
of the world this building. And the only alternative

is no alternative, an underworld of silver linings,
golden chains wrapped loosely (and growing
tighter) around my neck with promises
of a full gut and a place to lie.

I lie while bruised blossoms melt and mold

into persephonized daughters. Sleeping and wilting
forever reflowering next to the Lord
and Master of the wedding bed, the man
standing next to me, cold and endarkened.

Sunflowers bloom and I turn away from the morning, pulling
the sheets over my bare breasts and eyes, wanting
like another simultaneous death
to slip into the river, wet and cold and unchangeable.