The Dead Girl, Upon Being Advised by Her Therapist to Pick Up Gardening
You can see the issue with this, can’t you?
It’s not the bugs. You’d think it would be the bugs.
I’m one inspirational quote away from becoming
a granny made of pure wicker, cracking under the belly-laugh
of every sun or worse, a tin frog hacking up peppermints
in a boutique I assure you my voice is perfectly pigtailed
when I evangelize the relationship between Vitamin D
and happiness, about self-care divaology and super
eco-friendly menstrual cups. I want you to write down
just three things you like about yourself. 1) my hips
under certain conditions 2) These hands, holding hunger by the scruff
as it jitters and teethes 3) When a sparrow flies over a pond
the pond keeps its dark bird, unraveling it. Want to hear something funny?
When I was twelve a boy I beat at soccer dug his nails into my breast
until the petals flushed red, until the air knelt in my throat
and he said you’re too ugly to ever be raped. Well, joke’s on you, Evan!
it’s funny if you read my file I promise
I wasn’t suggesting that they weren’t an issue at all.
The bugs, I mean.
All Things Considered, My Dear Vygotsky
The windchime dragged against the chain-linked fence. The empty dog bowl carbonated with ants. The bees searching for their full-bellied flowers. The rattle of tin when instead they swore their bodies to a can of tomatoes chapeled beneath a bush. The noise. The mugger moon. The acne-scarred face it presses against the glass. The many doors you must open to get to Mom. The pleurisy of the pipes, the wallpaper that swells and blisters as water hacks through the bedroom. The way your knees touch on the twin mattress. The shadows that slip from her face, the moon staring back beneath her hair. The day that Granny died. The shampoo that crackled in Mom’s hair as she stepped into the living room. The way she was pale and formless like a new species mumbled from its shell, bewildered by what the body forgot. The dentistry of parent-teacher conferences. The fingers they leave in your mouth. The pills they give you to read. The noise. The sins you imagine crawling across your body like fleas, feathered feet rippling through your clothes. The notes of encouragement you write to the dying tree. The monkey bars you and your friends pretend to be hanged on. The ginger way you slip the notes beneath its gouty root. The noise. The girl you called retarded, how quickly her face unbuttoned. The gavel of this small release. The little army men you line across the windowsill. The strip of grass that binds their legs. The way this paralyzes them. The way this keeps them safe. The owl pellet you cracked open with a stick. The mouse’s foot that uncurls
claw by claw byclaw