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Nocturne with Aroace Girl photo

I steer the moon over my right shoulder, vertebrae
lodged above coyote ridge, winding plains road
I drive all the night’s hungers down. White light
clasping the devil’s backbone. Today snow blanked
the mountains and their highway beneath me, named
for a broken weapon. What pulls a woman like me
out here alone, they want to know? What heartbreak am I
running from where coyote eyes and yellow coneflowers sting
the black? Prairie of cancellous bone, prayer of distance
and homes. Not heartbreak but a way to let the clotted
salt crow of joy out of my throat. Pulse flicker,
how quick to keep up with thirst. Shame is not
a god I’ll bow to anymore. Dilate shale’s radio song.
Strip sorrow from the larynx. Not broken
but igneous. Not lonely but glutted with night
and everything that lives within it and me. Half rib
and half name—I’m arched cervix and wheel glitter,
headlights cinched to a cow skull’s absent tongue.
I want to be remembered as a little snap between teeth
hungering for the next heart. I will not be bound to day
or bed, bright veils and myths of how to be lonely.
Nothing is alone while it still has breath enough
to survive on something else. And I am full
of so many things remaining past body: shadow trailing
a skeleton a behind it, a voice laughing past the reach
of men who hunt her, a small thing’s escape.
Tell me I want to fuck all you
want. I’m mothered by gnaw and moth, yawned rapturous
in obliterate dark. A few houses scattered
marrow in the sage. I spill my guts in dirt
to read my future minute to minute. Tell me
my throat was made for swallowing one thing only.
Watch my jaws open wide and pink where all small things
are hunted, make a dawn of teeth and meadowlark song.


image: @j_b_foto