I was born from good grief.
In grief, I was born, fell
mouth-first, an ohhhh
announcing my vector,
splitting and sloughing off
the cragged space rock
that was my skin.
I had no knowledge
of penetration, I spun
in my matter when I saw
one asteroid about to brush
against another, but I started
having dreams where I felt
a body enter my body,
and therefore, retained
a pink wound of soul.
When I emerged
from the charred soil, I found
my legs, furred with soft
brown hair, and inside: Bone.
Muscle. Fat, more of which
was collected on my chest,
my back. I had a forward notion
and found a wall with stone
as cold, as pocked as my skin
used to be. There was glass
to see through and suddenly,
You had legs just like me and so many toes!
You had two nostrils and much breath!
You had a vase of flowers, warped by sunlight!
You said you wanted to know my name, which was an object
we could use to trade.
You said we're all fascinated by somebody else's window,
but that I should be clothed.
You said you wanted to see me, so you took a photograph.
You showed me how the lens creates distance, Eros.
You showed me rage when I cut the faces from the prints
because I didn't want their information.
You showed me apology, patience then.
You were every single color at once.
You flashed and then disappeared.
Like the sucker fish, I placed my mouth on every pane,
in every corner, and still, could not understand dimension.
I sat for a long time, before I noticed the one-way glass,
the mirror in front of me. I felt my appetite come back.
Watching my own disrobing, I understood what you meant
when you called me voyeur. By pulling on an invisible rope,
I winched open my legs, as if to say, Here, another object,
another window. Here in my I, an X stretched Vitruvian.
An ox, all its braids flexed. An axe, its head poised to split.
All along the feeling mine. My body and my body.
Notes: "pink wound / of soul" is an allusion to a line from Olena Kalytiak Davis' "the true
repertory of the wrack and redemption of sir olena kalytiak davis;" "Fascinated by somebody else's
window" comes from a quote by Jay Manis in Scopophilia: The Love of Looking (1985).