After Erika Meitner
Creation myth: fatherless beginning. A Rush more
intoxicating than absinthe—I guess peace bores the greatest men.
I could laugh about it, but if I could be dutifully average, I have
at least sixty more years to live. These wars have begun rhyming,
burgeoning childhood impulses. Did we ever
unstage, unsoil, unsteal? I wish I could midwife the land into
loving color, but already death is as nostalgic as Sunday brunches,
only sweet when it’s unfamiliar. Voices blur and vanish into bar charts.
I tried antidotes, spit sugarcane, bathed in regrets plastered
on open wounds. Saturdays, Mother and I search the supermarket
for fruits on sale. She places two peaches in my cart and I curse
their admissible oblivion. At night, when we dream ourselves to sleep—
her world remains tragically bright and mine godlessly ashy. I kiss
her numbed fingers and pray that silence is not tragedy’s
final stage. Try not to dream too hard, she hums, and I tell her I
wish I couldn’t. Today, a bluebird rips apart petunia petals and I hate
how this is what death has become. There was once an island we named Angel
only because our last and next life were a step away. I am iron-fisted,
manufactured & good. I mistake the spring goldenrods as fallout but I’m not
irreparable yet to believe that war is a habit of character. Tell me I
Know Nothing. Take me raw & lifeless, blistered & baptized. Come
tourist intervention, blissful revolution, underwater exploitation. How often I stare into myself
and hate how only the heart, when lesioned from the body, is borderless. I weigh myself
to be less than my maximized profits, a cartograph of imagined sums. In a summer,
when prayer still isn’t enough, will I know what to do with my body? Would we listen?
The past: a little sister, knocking at our doors.