HANDS STUDY, THE DAY YOU LEFT, AUTOPSY OF A DEAD (EYED) WOMAN

by | Dec 8, 2020 | Issue Eighteen, Poetry

HANDS STUDY

[1] These

[2] we see daily.

[3] holding so little.

[4] Ringed

[5] Wrinkled

[6] Shaking

[7] filled with want.

[8] Scarred

[9] with broken blood vessels on knuckles, a long scar along the palm, brittle nails breaking.

[10] that need like lungs need air, need skin like flounder need sea.

[11] reaching out.

[12] sticky with blood, bleeding when the knife goes almost clear through.

[13] crumpling paper in fists.

[14] crushing too-rouge strawberries just to watch the juice pool between fingers.

[15] running through the creek.

[16] running through hair.

[17] holding so little.

[18] pressing against tense muscles.

[19] pressing into hands.

[20] with lunar dents as nails burrow into flesh.

[21] knowing where to touch. Intimately.

[22] holding so little.

[23] Holding

[24] Healing

[25] Let’s hold

[26] There’s something about this holding. This healing.

THE DAY YOU LEFT

I remembered

that wet Tuesday afternoon last winter

when the rain slapped the pavement

and the streets fullflooded

and we were the only ones brave enough

to leave our hearthside of shared bodyblaze

chamomile

clasped hands

and Henry Miller novels

and we ran outside

prancing like dancers with you first and me trailing

and followed the road lined with Georgia citrus

jumping into every grey streetpuddle

while the clouds poured rain into our worn boots

and then how

hands on knees

soaked from tress to toenail

I paused

trying to catch my breath

and you just kept running.

AUTOPSY OF A DEAD (EYED) WOMAN

Eyes: Rimmed red. Cerulean like the sea.

          Flecked with orange, full of fire.

Nose: Freckled.

Hair: Heavy as the dawn. Curling

         in the morning mist.

Lips: Small. Bitten. Uneven.

         How the lower lip pouts out.

Mouth: Hungry.

Heart: Hungry. Full to the brim

           with more than just blood.

Body Temp: Cold as winter.

Marks and Wounds: Scar tissue on knee.

            Speckled skin—cheeks, shoulders,

            thighs. A tiny tattoo. A jagged line

            lining her triceps from that time

            she fed a mare her finger.

Manner of Death: Accident.

Probable Cause of Death: A Monday.

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