ah, a whole day of cravings
curbed. feeling lighter
drinking coffee out of
blue and white porcelain cups,
how it sustains and suppresses
an appetite.
I am cataloging
food as it relates to money.
the less I eat.
the more I save for
other things.
I do not tell my partner
this; merely produce
cash for electricity,
merely thin myself
like I’ve always earned
to be a paper waif.
just kind of
feather.

realize that my bank account has
nothing in it for the third time in
my life.
the way I cradle the welcome
gifts from his mother,
these dishes, these pots:
all bright tangerine or
carnation yellow, and
red bowls.
red plates.
orange sequined quilt
across the bed.
she decorated the place while we were out
“making meetings.”
hung a portrait of a pineapple.
I felt the edges of the sink,
slightly damp and saw
something else.

I hated the stairs that cut through the center
and the backyard, too small
now lined with green safety fence,
chicken wire, he held up to show
me.  ways to keep the cat
safe inside.
now I am
replicating the house.
the way the stairs cut the
center and steep.

months later, I will
pluck out all of
the crabgrass in the tiny
backyard by hand, no gloves,
appreciating how quickly
my skin calluses,
the encasement for my
straws but utilitarian today,
productive today,
making things happen today.
the way I threw away the
windchime and its broken shells
littering the ground like it
meant nothing to me:
a childhood emblem I’d
had since I was eight,
tossed in a large black
carpenter bag.


all the ways I’ve entered
contracts on a whim,
the things I’ve collected
and the interminable slam
as I show my thorns,
me? I’m removed from
that space beginning again
to talk to ghosts
in the corridor
remembering
every step I’ve ever
taken; steep,
knees fractured,
ribs protruding.

“doors #1”

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