Kristy Bowen


We have no use for myth,
for this butterfly fluttering
in my closed palm,
for this book of pain.

Still, there are two ways
inside this poem. In one,
you must fall alseep beneath
the ash tree, repeat my name,
your tongue slipping against
the night, soft as chamois.

In another you slide like a fish
into the sea of my body,
find the pearl, the shiver and whirl,
speak with the lady at the bottom
of the lake, the compass
of her arms, the roll of her hips.

Most men do not fare well here.
Their bodies litter the beach
like driftwood. In bed, you tell me
I am bloodthirsty, my teeth
grazing the skin of your shoulder,
fingers scraping your back.

Sometimes I have two tongues.
godless. bloodless.
One confesses, one listens.
Don't think I've forgotten the women
you killed with indifference.
Their red mouths are furious.

Still, there's a flower I cannot
name rampant beside the road,
bones, smooth and white,
rattling in the cage of my ribs.

I am something waiting to be caught.

Location: Chicago, Illinois
Publications: Tryst, Lightning Bell Poetry Journal, Rose and Thorn, Blue Fifth, Stirring, etc.
Editor of: Wicked Alice

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