The doctor traces my orbital bone
with her finger, asks
when was it last that I slept,
and who do I call
when I’m scared?
The skin on my face
is dry. Doc says my body needs rest.
I think back to yesterday: a woman
passing by was telling her companion:
you know, my brain
has been damaged, I can’t remember
what I’ve said.
I spend so much time looking
for signs. I asked a shaman
to retrieve the lost parts
of my soul. But the shaman said no,
that my soul
is intact, just enmeshed.
Riding the subway home, I imagine
the man above me clenching
and unclenching my throat.
During any risk
assessment, one must identify each hazard,
then determine who will be harmed
I find it natural
to smile when I lock eyes
with a stranger, I give my name
away. I’ve read that deep sorrow
is cyclical, like seasons of harsh
rain—but also genetic.
my mother scrubbed the floors
each day until they shone. These mornings,
making my bed is a futile
task. These nights, I push a pile
of laundry to one side, the clothes
cradling my back.
People always say
you’ll know love when you find it. . .
But how can I describe my God
sized hole, how it widens
with each breath?