by Jes C. Kuhn
Last Promise Made
She walks away in another suicide bluff,
living a lower-case life.
Another night without kissing on a punctured rug,
or ensnared in the belt-buckle of a hemlock roll-over,
or finding missing tiger teeth that will inherit your thigh muscle.
Girls number their suppers like
a legless horse race.
Children at the bottom of a bottle,
praying in bare kitchens
to the Gods of Pink-Eye for food.
Comparing each other to graven mothers or
the skeletal growth of older, ashen daughters.
When all the woman wants
are endless silhouettes in dusk,
can star and constellation soldiers march
to the sputter of a slit wrist?
What about the women before,
who bed with jeweled thieves and
who spread out internment camps
for the modern wilting class?
--I remember I was simply paging through labia like French literature with a hostility toward hummingbirds.--
Why even make promises anymore?
The sash has parted,
the moon robe replaces the paisley and lace,
the flower-pattern-skull-rush is a promissory misreading.
Promises are misused in practice,
in hard speech triangles,
like divorce cuffs on the felt table of matrimony,
death card up the short sleeve, just out of judgmental sight.
These unresolved matters are the placemats of patriarchy.
(the thing is,
is that nothing changes,
which is the point,
the catholic lurch,
the unrepentant rapists coo at the media,
the American folk standing up for the
torturous yolk of a manicured Christ.)
If you take your life tonight,
then I understand,
to the height of the funeral crown,
to the bottom of a cat’s claw mask.
A life of unfading bruises,
abusive brown ringlets.
They can’t live without you, and yes,
they should be dead.
Forced belly rolls of ornamental shame,
spring trees turning their backs
on unthawed prescription medication.
So, I will rob the pharmacy by dawn,
and hope to escape from numb-day cops and
soot-tailed clerks and the wife-deceivers and
shape-skinners moving into the weeds
filing complaints to the board of bored administrators.
--Consoled by the grave,
make her issues as plain as the dirt dug
with a skeletal facial scrub.--
Snow in May makes everyone sad or spurred,
no great revelation when the sun shows,
they keep spreading bone thin in this freezing,
fatty acid disenchantment..
Last updated February 12, 2016