So we’re in the
lilac rooms:
chalky rooms
where everyone can be a body and
where synthetic noises count you to bits.
The doctor’s surprised to see two of us on the bed,
my sandals flopped on the lino like they’ve had an accident.
I get off like you don’t need me and
you get all strapped up
like a Christmas tree or a computer,
your naked breasts flat and weak, small, flat nipples with
stickers stuck down like kisses.
You’re okay,
you’re okay. I take you home.
Your head on my lap, my fingers on your scalp, both my hands on your head,
I try to be a blanket for you,
lying about how silent I can be.
We compare toes
(I think you feel alive)-
as warm as each other,
as real as the freckles on your curved, hot arms-
freakishly real,
tessellating into possibilities.
Cushioned next to you
in the white, white bath, your soap a white cartoon bone,
your cradled body a body,
a hot factory.
I make
movie words,
I make comic book noises
and I feed you sweet things with my hands,
get you clean
(I think I’ve got you clean), get you
into white clothes,
white cotton,
soft, white fabrics.
A lump, a blurt: the rough, blurting unease of
your phone call.
And he does come (I stay),
and he sits,
the idiot-
like nothing bad could happen in this weather.
Well I wait,
I’m his fucking weather.
I’m in the corner
punctuation marks for eyes,
crouching on the bed like a secret,
an odd number
an old speech.
A hate siren.
I’m pretty sure he can feel my hate-
the way the bones move in my face;
I’m pretty sure,
but I listen
and I can’t hear.
I try to hear but I listen.
I listen to you, chewing
on my thoughts and what
could be on my face?
I hear him.
I hear nothing and it takes ages
to hear nothing
but uncertainty.
I’m starving.
I eat whole loaf of bread
in the car on the way home
and you ask me to say
it was an accident.