Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Poem in Cordite

A poem published in Cordite.

 "Sometimes I wonder if..."
Sometimes I Wonder if

our whole world is a third world
a step-sister left behind in the galaxy’s
cinderella story

ugly cousin earth spinning on her heel
raging at the cosmos’ beauty

defective pieces of swept-up stardust from factories that abuse labouring angels
offal from a flourishing inter-galactic trade, we who want nothing more than to be saved
and nothing saved but us
our unwatched backs, our shaken wombs
like all rejects, we spill mother’s secrets
to anyone who listens
anyone holding out his arms
anyone who promises toffee and lies
about how nice we look

mesmerized by metal and muscle
we ask strangers to swing an axe
into the sun’s gut
we watch

at night, we whisper to each other –
we were not made weak and small for nothing we can slide into mother’s cracked skin and hide inside her burn-red belly until it’s over
we are fated to drink the sap in her marrow we can grow a tangle of nerves and veins until
each one is inside each one
and no one can live without killing
and no one can kill without dying
thus, we can survive.

flowers in armpits, we fantasize
about another galaxy –
no factories, no fence-sitting angels
with halos of barbed wire
no greater muscle than our own

we pour yellow and black and red earth
on our eyes until the dream is solid
as earth’s bones

we cry for this place
tucked behind the knees of the galaxy
gurgling in the crook of the sun’s elbow
a place scorched clean.

in her sleep
our planet grinds her teeth.

[This is an edited version of the poem published in Cordite magazine]

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