Sunday, March 09, 2008

my father as metaphor, my mother as a topical map

And they were beautiful, at times, the animals—
misshapen, torsos distorted, legs outnumbered.
On her belly, he let the beasts run wild with fever,
killing everything: grass, thistle, flowers .
Until the land was flat , emptied even of insects.
A land full of distance and clouds.
It was not until later, when the children came
to pitch their tents, run in the open fields. It was the children
who knew enough to look down,
to see nothing to live on. Everyone paid attention then
to the drought, and the earth which never filled
with water. Everyone forgot the animals
except for the father, he kept them close,
leaving the others behind to care for the land.

ii. my sister concave, and I convex

We called each other valley, mountain. We were not girls,
who braided hair, or stared at the moon
but using our hands as claws,we carved rivers
into each other’s palms so when the wild dogs came,
we were girls, prepared to fight.
The earth was not our mother
but a second skin we wore at night.
We did not care for the land but the dogs, the dogs
consumed our minds. We believed ourselves people
without scent, naked we walked into the den
of we what feared. What rose and fell
from us was not a god, nor a deity we knew to name.

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