Butterfly the Gnarled

by Amy King

Amy King

Into my stomach an explosion of stars
where I rely on myself, my government name, bony letters
of fingers that tunnel your bisected heart, skyward with dark.

Parasites bed my inner lining—
Am I not the rubberized universe?
I am its buffer and get to name things for what they are,
who they serve—what order.

A plural centipede burrows outbound,
crawls the spine of my hand,
tells my pencil to move along, give out lead.
Months of illness do that to a puppet,
gnaw at her strings, place moths on her neighbors,
blend them with gypsies who live the treetops uprooted.

Dare the deliberately happy to butterfly the gnarled roots of life—

That we pass too many pounds of flesh uncut.
Too much genius hermitted in stereo.
The round tables forgetting their bird seed.
Clovers push luck to surround these hollow legs.

Why no windows on the sides of houses?
Why no flames beneath stones that burn?
Why do all minutes lead the blue carp and black eel now?

We’ll be passing through heaven in a split pea shell,
emptied of light, hard as effusive green
ore the blood corrupts daily, within and without.

I Want to Make You Safe

Last updated June 30, 2015