By | 15 May 2023

men bleed cartilage wrenching bump nose splitting
cupped hand full of teeth and manly curses still photographs
the wet smell of sweat and churned grass
women bleed soft-tissue injuries hidden in A-line dresses
squatting over the toilet bowl blood dripping quickly to the cubicle
breath out and in firm fingers pushing as I blossom fall
two minutes two more minutes ‘til the end of lunch

we have waited two long years for the end of monthly curses
for a belly to quicken breasts to blossom
brown nipples to be on proud display in bandage dresses or oversized
sweatshirts listing south a longing for mangoes
things pungent and dripping juice licked from fingers pushing
yellow flesh one hand above and one below the bump on proud display
in photographs a human cello perfect pitch and tone

the doctor produces a specimen cup with a silent flourish
mouths platitudes solemn pitch and tone points out the cubicle
as I count down the silent minutes worry at my lip
with nervous teeth up up halfway towards the sign: occupied
then opened the forgotten blossom
of true desire red lines through monthly dates a calendar’s siren song
remembered days when we walked through honey haunting cello

the accompaniment to summer picnics in the grass me riding you
breath in and out out and in your shocked tone oh shit and then my name
fumbled hands pulling I look down then up pungent dripping
your blood-red thighs and belly another month wasted impossible
my body’s long silence looking up at the sun my eyes blood and honey
it’s not only men who bleed lovers who blossom and fall
but women like me curses in chorus and song two long years and nothing

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