A letter to my coffin
Take this body stretched, scarred, bruised, (she was not careful) blood dripped, then stopped. Wounds opened and healed. A blister like a womb bubbled up to incubate the skin of a scaldedforearm
(the same brown limb which bears the memory of being kissed from wrist to elbow crease on an escalator sliding underground)
She starved and gorged, licked salt and color from her fingers pressed a cold bottle against her neck massaged her own calloused feet with soft hands wiped sweat from between her breasts bit her own tongue. This body held knives and babies, soft balls of dough, the rough faces of men. Ran fingers through beards, dragged teeth against skin squeezed with her thighs& released them unharmed.
She rocked herself to sleep and shuddered awake in the dark. Enough. She earned this sturdybed, this freedom from dreams.
When we remember these nights
We will marvel at the quaint optimism of our outrageThese nights we discovered the need to fold,press torso to thigh, the urge to shrink and fade and vanish,to curl the children's bodiesback into ours, repeal the splitting of cells,the multiplication forward into time.We will remember black marker bleedexposing cracks as we wrote our lawyers’ phone numberson the ridges inside our wrists, on our sons’ soft shoulders.
These nights we arrived at one another’s doors,lonely, leaned like the sides of a ladder. These nightswe discovered the knives in our lovers’ hands & pocketsof weakness surrounding us. The irrational toleranceof our allies. These days our tears refused to clot,and we learned to cry sober & straight facedwhile pulling levers, pushing buttons,turning the steering wheel.
Nobody wails anymore.