From habit, burnt

as if every morning now

the sun has to be reheated

still frightened by the cold

more than coming alone

— it's your usual meal

two slices, made stale

broken open the way coffee

just by boiling

turns your mouth black

— you've learned to open bread

till it reeks with ashes

and smoke already rising

to become another mouth

and on its lips

the small blister, resting

though there's no moon

only this side by side

lowered slowly, no longer

empty, your arms cramped

calling for each other.


Already weightless these steps

don't need the morning

back away as that emptiness

stars are used to

— you can hear them narrowing

creaking and from behind

wait for the sun to open fire

flash past your forehead

though you can't make out

the week or year or the cloud

that knows you're there

comes for you between more rain

and mountainside still standing

no longer growing grass

can't love or remember

— you hide the way this attic

opens inside a door

that is not a flower

— an iron knob

that turns away nothing

and in your arms nothing, nothing.



table of contentsON6_contents.htmlON6_contents.htmlshapeimage_3_link_0

Alison Scarpulla

Copyright © 2016, Otis Nebula Press. All rights reserved.