Carole loved her Cat
Carole loved her cat,
but when it died the apartment felt roomier.
She didn’t have to share a bed anymore.
Carole stamped loneliness on her Christmas cards,
So when she decided not to send them out, she let curls out.
No more thistles in the pen scratch and thorny friends.
No more containing her silk-strung iron curls.
Carole ran a bath on Thursday nights,
But she stopped getting out when the water got cooler.
She liked shriveling up
to the tune of drafty daydreams on her back.
Carole thought her hair was too unruly
She thought her waist was too high
She thought her cheekbones were low,
But getting rid of the bathroom mirror made her forget.
She was a birthed back into a caterpillar
Lost in a cocoon of Sunday afternoons
Separated from smooth skin and ideal waistlines.
Carole longed for a birthday party in the park,
But seeing her face in a cup of tea was her celebration.
She was queen to her Chamomile kingdom.
Her court was the lemon floating on top.
Timeless Love Odes
Write a love note and bury it.
Sink it into the vegetable garden,
Six steps south of the beets
Four wishes west of the rutabagas.
Found 94 years later
By a terrier with a rosebud tonge,
Two mangled ears, and four paws
Creamy and freckled
With the remains of tramples inchworms.
You are dead, your garden lost in wild beds,
And that poor pup, inbred
A God-bound Cousin
For an instant
Her soul was viciously devine.
Her feet left surface, her curls gently floated.
Until their breaths were alone. Their own.
Silk-stranded serpents trilled through seas.
Their souls were hers, yet not her own.
She arched her back, the water lapped
Surely shattered by the curvature.
The serpents grasped, and all they saw
Became a portrait carved in limestone.
There is patting feet on watered tiles.
Children speaking and a glass door slamming.
Chlorine fractured the mindful tenure.
This hotel pool is no place to be profound.
Her Body was a Temple
She rinsed her chest in olive oil
Anointing the female figure with the kitchen cabinets.
Her movements embodied shriveled fingers
And the papaya’s outside
the bedroom window.
Her body breathed with her words.
It caught with her thoughts.
It enveloped the spirits that she loved
In microscopic dew drops.
She dipped her legs in patchouli
And cleansed her pores in water so pure
It might as well be holy.
The centipede looked into my eyes
So fiercely I dropped a paintbrush.
It fell forty imaginary stories,
But the floor looked regal in splattered attire.
She slipped across the edge of the easel
A city of hardwood and my bare feet
Bustled below her skyscraper ledge.
Her legs suctioned into pockets of discarded pigment.
New shoes of mauve and gold.
She was caught by my creativity
Lost to a sea of color she could never understand.
Her body twirled in a vicious search for freedom.
Her legs releasing one at a time.
She lifted her painted body onto my masterpiece.
A vision of a bloodstained trail
On a painting with my signature.
I could have stopped her, but still I froze.
She left a hundred marks in each inch.
Each printed point was celestial,
But perfectly placed and brighter than smog.
Her strokes lifted higher
Until the painting levitated,
Leaving shadow in the sidewalks below.
Her trail was my path and my delicacy.
I followed her with rich stripes of gratitude.
She took a break on the 45th floor
(four inches above the horizon).
By then I had become the student to her master.
But her legs were encrusted in too-thick layers
And her lungs weakened in the acrylic fumes.
The city below her wept
My toes stopped fidgeting,
And the paint stains dimmed.
I swept in and coated her in layers of magenta
And a green which I have no name.
Her death is my celebration.
I will always be her muse.
My art is always hers.