Put me out, put me out. I fevered my way
out of school again. Then forgot to leave the lie:
the play at palsy, my best friend, mercury &
a crown of sighs. I was burnt tongue, grump girl,
doped up on my souring skin, nursed napward
by colorless, toxic seconds. My dream was brief;
it briefed me. The book I was reading bit me
& I tried to bite it back, but left the dream
for another, jawing at the air. There I loved
my name as if it were not my own, as if
all the Tanyas lived in an Tanya-forest
without bodies—I could smell them burning
supper. Now all my flesh is glass & all life
just a picnic of reflection: there's flame & then
there's flame, turning itself inside out for you—
in invitation. Sleight of mouth, a blue door
in the flame's middle, the white-hot knob,
an idle girl's tabernacle. Ah, exile, how easy
it is to fall for myself, to erect &
embroider my body. I am a flower.
& a condition. A supine sniper in bed,
myopic — picking off the swan in the corner
(twilight's muscle) a bullet through its neck.
How else should I measure my leisure?
No skinned knees, no gravel in my palm. No
blood but in words, which isn't blood at all,
but a devil's devil finding my hands & placing
them wherever they are not needed.