selections from & CRUEL RED     

Otoliths, 2010     

by Mary Kasimor     




                                                      - ix -

                  my sister             is            swaddled in
the grass
                               I ventured out      held down
the milky
                 way                                    & ran aground
              to the surface      I consciously met 
                     her on                       the midwest ice
compensating for
               too little self             too many sisters
                 the flattened     path was suspicions 
the placed
                    path exhumed a rabbit’s foot               a
                                  direction back out               my
sister blue 
                 directed me to          the other patch
                           of land          put up the tents
                 feasted on ditch grass        burned
                                    the fingerprint         my other
sister said
       the end is never coming                (a
deprivation of 
                           kin)        I slit my wrists         a ruby
         a small picture          of similar deaths
                                 in the desert                  my sister
         the outside of my eyes    my sister does not
                      know the other side              of poetry
                               my sister              swallows     glass


                                                       - xxii -

                what I want is not without         tension,                    teeth
                               bite marks                          we are no longer found
in tapestries     with gaping                                   souls,        the loss
of blood.                        those minerals float to the surface             &
          become Mozart (s)plashing in the water                 Sappho
off wings         Aristotle escaping with self.                  he
meant that
self government                           was a dream           on the
you write in my facebook:                                 when mexico
                      was good,          before people melted away    
defined as a state
of mind.      I wore my tire soled sandals            the soul of
the people
               came from fluorescent lights,          incense to the
our blood does not explain                   why,         we are   
floating. loss        
held in arms                the space between safety                  grazing
                                     your love fights for dominance.                  an
              country,               I am delivered in a box               pieces of
bloody ashes.        more disputes flew                        over money
carved boundaries.                             the faces left on the
mountains     songs
                  captured in caves                    bodies never
recovered.      from
                           the suburbs,        refrigerators of stainless



                                                      - xxix -

the sharp thrust      of tentacles      
                                          of sister’s spear
                 the sky no one owns      (the father)      unlike the
listens softly        when a tree approaches the stars
those encrusted with cold       
                         moths the spiders
suck off the liquid skin      
the father carries
                                                                    keys in his throat     
                                    dawn cleverly hides the hills 
                                                           softly rounded    no one
knows who they are
   crawling into themselves          the wind falls
                                                     off the edge     it is not a truthful
moment   nor
a minute to spare     
                    we buy hats with birds nesting
in the brims     our father met us empty handed &
blind from birth
                        perfect blood the husband begot
the brain      a brilliant flash of pain       
then he was gone
the sisters displayed themselves         wearing tartan plaid
                         & velvet veils            the lyre chained to the air  
the string          unwound the cloth       
freed us from the past
                   fallen we fell         another bruise                  the
dirt flew free
made the ocean


                                                      - xxxiv -

               & north dakota

               joy among the voices, over slices of
                       oranges the juice of the sun. texas
                       squeezed. the underbelly, the fly’s
               wing under the microscope. hum.

               distracted from tedium working
               through happiness. a made the fire,
                       b fell through. the roof c wore
               green. shoes stitched with guitar. strings

               the grand canyon the pacific ocean & north
               dakota rivers smile. vanilla over the falls
               fallen like a lemon fizzy bomb polka
               dots, conjoined at each curve of air.



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