Home Pomes: quarks; Haiku For an Extravagant & Wheeling Stranger; Notes on the Blowjob; You’re Gonna Go Far, Kid; Falling in Love Again

quarks

i.

& i am so nauseated & so pen\\insular & i am afraid that i have been knocked from your brain by concussion, buried with old dendrites in sloppy graves

ii. (for james wright)

i worry about your body’s lack of iron & its restless legs
i worry & you are impulsive in the north pole because it got too warm for you down
here

i worry because your smile is as suicidally beautiful as those soldier boys who played football in ohio the day we all wanted to be gamma rays the year you wanted to push that girl against the wall & you didn’t know me

iii.

worry & sorry don’t rhyme i’m sorry because i don’t know you & i didn’t know you but before you decompose i would like to say

that i was charmed,

and you were strange

Haiku For an Extravagant & Wheeling Stranger

Oppressed, repressed, compressed, depressed, hard-pressed, expressed, impressed; hollowed out, inside-out, I’m moving out, my insides are out. My insides are brick red. My insect insides are iridescent. My insides are sprawled all over the sidewalk in a Fibonacci sequence spiraling toward the edges, the edges of the city, the spherical planet of surgery, the edges of the discriminant which equals negative twelve which equals “nothing is real” plastered on the faces of every boy who dared to look down. Every boy who showed me his hand streaked with semen & seaweed-green tattoos, a jack of clubs, the queen of hearts, the queen of the heartland, my insides embedded in the mountainside. The jack of clubs is a soldier & he looks down, dares to look down the cliff like a woman’s shirtfront, where crushed cars lay rusted to the grass, moving out, men, we’re moving out. Fracture, fixture, mixture, picturesque postcard pasture infested & festering with love, filtered through love, supersaturated with love! I am depressed but I am also impressed. I am radioactive. I am gripping this basement couch like it’s my ticket to nirvana & I am kissing him everywhere in the dark, his chin, his throat, the walls, the floor, his scientist’s hands (in the city of depressed & also impressed) that are obsessive & compulsive & impulsive & convulsing across my hollow chest, but are also careful, his hands which are also careful.

Notes on the Blowjob

1.

like opening your favorite book
& finding that a hole has been
carved into it for vodka
that steals the breath from your diaphragm in quick electric
shocks impulsive & instinctive
through every
crack in the sidewalk of your heart
broken, baby, now you can’t
donate it to science

2.

i am not used to the sensation of two mouths instead of one so excuse me if i bite too hard or too quickly or hit you with my nose like a speeding car in the movie we didn’t watch because hands & lips & saliva were readily available an abundance of resources
holy boy, just crack me open like your
spine & maybe you will find what you are looking for

3.

i wasn’t any good at
sucking you off i could tell
by the way you crossed
your arms instead of clinging
to my hair so tightly it
choked me (not that
i wasn’t already choking
on something like humility but
dirtier) so i’m sorry if
my lips don’t feel like the mouth
of a river hugging tight to the
banks but you know
you tasted of sugarless
lemon candies & when you
went down on me it was like
being stabbed with the
white-hot barrel of a
shotgun & i couldn’t
couldn’t didn’t come but the
bubblegum moans i made were
genuine i promise you i’m
still very empty inside

4.

you aren’t a lover
but you are a lovely nurse & i
thank you for it i thank you for it
for it’s not a disease or a cure
just a curse

the worst
that can happen is your parents walking in on us while
your tongue’s bandaging that weeping wound of my thighs
(disgusting, huh) oh!

5.

for weeks i’ve been wanting
to cry but the desert’s
been bred in my eyes so come
forward i want you in my throat cause
maybe my gag reflex won’t fail
me & the tears will drip in
mascara creeks on my crying
clown cheeks with glasgow
awkwardness writ into this
mess of teenage
hormones disguised as death

You’re Gonna Go Far, Kid

call me kid.
i still feel like one most days, the kind of little boy who dribbles
melted chocolate down his rashy chin and eats too much of it
in spite of his mom’s predictions that he’ll feel sick later;
and he does, between overgrown fingernails and broken hairline but
he’s not old enough to take scissors to either so he just
takes scissors to his t-shirt and weary cargo shorts
and when his clothes are shredded and his mom is angry instead of
worried he can’t form the words to tell her that they were too tight
around his swollen belly, he needed room to breathe, he needed
room for the blood to pump through the itchy arteries, he needed
to break things outside his own body but her face is red
like cherry popsicle stains so he cries until he’s old
enough to stop so
call me kid.

call me little poet.
i bought the book you told me to.
it fits into my left palm, which is covered
in lesions: weak spots where the words tried to get through.
my right one is an ocean whose depth i can’t fathom and a
salt content that should make all life impossible
its residue deposited on my tongue each evening.
i bought the book you told me to but i don’t know how to read it
just like the letters in my blind hands so call me little poet: rest of me’s
the desert you grew up in where water runs like gasoline does
here, now, here, with me, i’m starved of it
of what?

there’s a dictionary locked in the storage compartment
temporarily replacing my brain. you’ve got
an oasis between each of your fingers, a book
half-full of richly colored poems,
and i am thirsty.

so call me a scribe.
we studied ancient egypt in school this year, just like the years
before and the facts are always oil rainbows sliding over puddles
but i remember this: the scribes wrote on papyrus paper and folded
their legs like secret messages, like moths missing their wings.
what’s worse: missing wings, or your internal organs?
what’s worse: writing down lies, or not writing at all?
what’s worse: hunger or thirst? the breaking, the broken, the cutting
open. fluids are leaking out of the cracks on my sides and i don’t care
so much anymore, not now we’re done studying ancient egypt
as it appears their history ended where our school year did. it’s just as well:
i’m not the only one falling apart. call me a scribe so i can finish
writing down my arterial lines and i promise i won’t
tell who taught me to lie
this way.

Falling in Love Again

I am in love with you,
you, with the artificially sweet lips, the flat chest, the sad eyes
you, eating Skittles and pulling petals from plastic flowers
you, reading the books I don’t understand, whispering the songs
I can’t
You who will not die at the mercy of a good-looking man

I am in love with you
in the hijab that matches your lipstick, keeps
the cracks from showing, you
who functions electronically with a 40 oz.
power source and listen
electricity
is
important

and I am in love with you because my battery is dying
Nobody likes to admit it but machines
can fail, and I
am in love with you
, who commits suicide with every breath drawn
, who isn’t right if right is wrong

Like a flesh-eating virus, I am in love with the feast of your body
Your body, which is organic, composed of musical notes
instead of molecules and germs
I am in love with you renting
out the chambers of your heart
for $20 per month
and the way you medicate yourself with silence instead of a prescription

“I am in love with you”

and I am artificially intelligent,

and I have not yet been programmed to form words

of my own, and I am in love with you

because it is what I know how to do

Lucy Wainger, Age 15, Grade 10, Stuyvesant High School, Gold Key

This entry was written by NYC Scholastic Awards and published on December 3, 2013 at 4:00 pm. It’s filed under Poetry, Writing. Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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