What remains in the background.

aloe and bike marks
broken string
clarifying verb
dust of suppertime
eastern parkway
echo’d gender in your back pocket
falsified accent
glass harp and your bladder
jest of your dialect
knife fight
lesson plan from ghost’s milk
missed messages
piece of callus
questionable liar
railroad tracks rubble of voice
red dress
rest stop on the way toward your country
some blood
some coffee
that hash I almost smoked before we poem’d
two bends and a fold
u   u
wonder what would occur if you claimed me now
x x x x
your tooth
zipper lungs and zipper grunt and the day you stopped calling me ________ .


to recall/ to regret/ to leave behind

There was nothing. There were no gasps or grunts from pain there was no pain. MOON follows you home because no one else desires so there is light there is light there is shape to this survival. MOON could only be your lover if you let go if you let go of regret of the restriction in your bend in your height in your existence as stationary. This love this love is unreachable. When did it happen. When did the moment occur when memories moved into billboards and shadows leaned against bicycle wheels and that time that time some other ghost pushed their way in and life is full of hauntings.

You leave behind sleep. Hunger. The sex of your body. You change your locks so that your hips forget where to come home to. You hold your hand because it feels lonely and pockets are so dark and looming. You kiss your wrist with dry space. Your veins have collapsed. Where is the blood where is the blood even your blood is gone.

Sometimes you know how to be human. You know all about manners and rhythm. You understand what words mean and the ones you never learned you ask another. You never brush your hair but you breathe. You remember climbing trees in August and that one that held you in a forest in Brooklyn to keep you here to keep you here.

(you must) Remain.

if this is dying i am ready to live

When you posed/ with screams held open by upper and bottom lip/ did you know you’d be

How skinny was your grey and white mind, tilted
corner peeled
pressed into insignificant frame
gathered for Guggenheim possession

You were so desperate for moon, you dipped fingerprints in acid
burned one onto a building

francesca woodman

[where did the pain come from]

In Boulder, Colorado you broke into backyards
stole clothespin off laundry lines and dug them between
folds of your belly nipples ribcage

Francesca, you left all your body hair alone
[like me]
and your loneliness pushed you closer to art but
further from others
[me too]

You had a fondness for geometrics and mammaries

francesca woodman

And I have fallen in love with your right breast, perhaps
because it has been upstaged by your left.

And the trees
thin and long like you

In New Hampshire, you hide with stones and forest
align feminine to outdoor breathing


In Rome, you hung from door frames
haunted exits
reflected angels into puddles of gravel and dust

hid from calla lily too large
to approach
for inhale

paralysis of gaze as pants unzip toward puddled ground

photograph by francesca woodman

photograph by francesca woodman

From far away, see gizzards.
See Stockholm commuter train and newspaper unwelcome mats by throbbed feet.
See dancer or poet or unclaimed daughter or unemployed prodigy.
See airbrushed beautiful.
See exercised appendages grow frigid from the pinch.

Move closer now.
Closer still.
Get in there.

Notice the tear.
The point of reference from childhood.

Notice the frugality of sound.
The desperation for audience.

Someday your lonely will rock against me and create a baby.
This baby will have teeth where arms should be.
This baby will smudge like erasable ink.
This baby will be the weight of dictionaries and have skin sutured with semi-colons.

Someday I will feel clean enough to ask you to puncture me with paper clips–
to keep me together

Someday I will offer my real resume flooded with suspended spermatozoa and handcuffed to-do lists.

Someday I will send that letter.

Someday I will find you where I left you on train track where you lifted my shirt and dripped sofrito down my throat.

Someday paralysis will be more than a frozen and closer to a communication of stillness.

Unzip pants.
Walk away from clothes.
Hug the first puddle you see.

is this body rent-controlled?

After a weekend workshop where I bathed in body-talk, body-language, the discourse of body,
I wake up Monday morning and wonder:

how lived in is this body /
how to find comfort and sexiness within the curdles


how many windows are in this body

document the scratches and dents
search for mouse droppings and facial tics

if my body is a project,
diorama this body
papier mache this body
war point lanyard water color this body.

summertime flirts outside my window
I curve my eyes toward undraped apartments where woman leans over sink
where shirtless man waters plant on sill
where poet peeps the world one mailbox at a time

how to put a call out for deep tissue loving

my veins are in need of an orgasm
where every clot of blood bursts

leave my genitals alone!

lick everything but that (please)

how necessary is pleasure

[can you tell me how to get it back?]