Brandy Sejeck


Tracing the nylon seam of her wrist,
I measure longing.
Each stitch embroiders the fastened lip
of a great chasm --
each stitch, a separate purpose.

She says she laid her tendons in a row --
three shriveled lupine stalks.
It didnít even hurt.

I imagine my own wrist open,
sinew bulging chrysanthemum fat,
blood the consistency of boiled milk,
the nettle sting of life spouting
straight as a column --
a small, red geyser.

I do not bypass even the tiniest kernel of pain;
it rasps against my bones --
deformed millstones
that crackle with motion.
I listen for a purpose,
but the sound tapers to an emery scratch.

Quietly, I count stitches,
lingers learning each knot,
an illegible Braille,
knowing they somehow link with life.
They somehow link with longing.


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