The Day We Bury

1 February 2017

How did I lose my husband?

I enter the living room where my mother is breathing as if it is the only thing she can do and

without warning a neutered wand of evil shoots (inchoate bale of one bonded in marriage) a blundering solecism—

is it the uninvited god speaker?
is it just the biblical beseecher?
is it the she/he possessor?

It is the bowed and bent one, the dutiful one—it is the cakeless fairy flinching, salivating, masticating, saliva spitting. Hubris clenching a chafed sphincter

Old age should rave and blister
not you—a shrew from the stalls, a cat on heat, a blade to piss, a rank, damp stew—a long and nurtured suffering, a space chamber—empty febrile, scaffolding askew: fire frisson lapse gnaw scour graze swipe slosh beetle harmonium ribcage raw scratching road kill neck kill stomp kill bilious kill—transparent to all, except an epicene self growing hoarse

A searchlight reveals details—a freshly dug gravesite and the monsoon strikes as the Mongrel Mob sweeps up to the cemetery gates—a four-car drug deal in the dense rain and my husband alone in the hole bailing, then your brother battling mine with a four by two threatening

to kill—
must run in the family


I want you back

I want you in the kitchen I want you peeling
I want you darning I want you preening
I want you giddy in the morning

I don’t proclaim innocence nor do I curse—but
I was handpicked so claim feral privilege

if I croon—if I bare my fangs
if I initiate preliminaries
if I climb the hillside of wild horses
and hidden tomo and broken apple boxes
and topiaried cherry trees and spiky
gooseberry bushes and half-cut potatoes
plunged in behind the shovel…

I may delve to the core goose fat spilling from
the slippery corners of my mouth

just in time to catch
your thin bones
your failing flesh
your jagged surges
your scintillant breath

 


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