Manichee

I met a
Manichee of vulpine gaze
who squatted in a shadow still,
his nose pointed at the light,
a sentry testing the dichotomic
air.

He spoke of
bracing gums and betting souls
on a darkness that was six inches
thick, that tasted of hailstone,
not of hell, and could be pinched
like fallen snow.

I asked
if he could cross the line
and put his face into the light —
but he raked his fingers in mounds
of night and showed me
the underside of his
blackened nails.

He denied
that where he sat was in theory,
and raved that I should be hungry:
“All material is reality, yet
you think I can move through
her polar will.”

He said, and I
did not hear him breathe,
“I am incarnate; this shadow
is loathe to let me be. And so
I will keep my watch of light
until her origin purges me.”

© 2017 Stellular Scribe

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No One Knows

looking feels forced to
me, as if in
crossing glances
i am
the violator
of my neighbor’s
privacy and
the interloper
of his misery.

contact is cruelty
especially
when unbidden
by my
imperfect eyes
and his
dragonfly pupils
that dart
to sweeter nectar
still.

i look away,
my shoulders hunch,
and i fold in,
a flytrap
unused to sight
as I taste
the exoskeleton
that could’ve
been.

© 2017 Stellular Scribe

Communion

I nibble the corner of God
on a hot Sunday
and I am reminded
of Italian grandmothers
who crumble pizzelle
over vanilla ice cream.

I nod my Amen not
to the Latin words
in my Irish priest’s mouth,
but to the body
in my memories,
to the bread
that my family breaks each day,
to the old songs and the “Salute!
of shiny faces over
red tablecloths,
to picking patron saints
and dancing
in white, rite-of-passage dresses
while reciting rosaries
in my father’s
voice.

I taste not the resurrection,
nor the eternity that I am
meant to starve for. In
breaking God between my
teeth, I confess to nothing
but the heritage
of food and love
and wanting more.

© 2017 Stellular Scribe

nightstand

eyeteeth before eyes
grabbing the stranger’s wrist
chin tilted towards the neon
she floods her face

familiar with his jawline
glass spreading skin
in the bottle, underwater
the world spins

two, two, three, four
the dance floor is sewage
breathing, old saliva welling
ankles twist

memory is a tricky thing
he’s like all the rest
just sweat and want and fingernails
good night, let’s bite

© 2017 Stellular Scribe

Heed

Take heed. Across
a wieldy hill we have
a barefooted girl, her big
toe in the dirt, her fingernails
hanging in pieces of
retribution.
She kicks into the
giving grass
and storms.
A way down the hill
a stone is pitched.
It sings,
upended, reprimanded —
it finds a burrow
in the lake,
a lake that laments
on how flat it must
seem to the
overhanging ones.
It swallows the
stone, and hears
the girl’s cries in its
coiling gills.
She suffocates on
uprooting things,
on watching them drown
in the lake’s watery mouth,
on losing a piece
of what was sure to her.
Back up the hill, on
a boulder’s back,
she rests her toe
and holds her breath.

© 2017 Stellular Scribe