ISSUE TWELVE | SPRING 2019
I’ve perfected my vanishing act
it’s no longer an illusion
I imagine you
talking to me
when I’m not there
You go blind with sensation / no, sensation
aims it’s glowing, sizzles cataracts / You just
wanted to say sizzle and cataract
says who fingerprinting my red
nipple and beyond
the fence my blind
Without a body can you even
have sex anymore? / technically
stripped as a profane flower
penetrating earth to meet sky
What does it feel like
to live in the sky? / backlit
as fuck / And what was it like
underground? / remember
the imprint the pit makes
in the flesh of a nectarine?
here, pluck my teeth
now tongue the cave
etching my mute—
mute— mutilated gum
it’s so sexual to be born,
to be born again
virgin. I’m ready now
to examine my delusions
but they vanish
MINE IS A FAINT VOICE. KINDLY TUNE ACCORDINGLY.
An ancient bot barely
legible through fuzzy
scratchings of spinal cord:
how many years do I have to go back to sleep
to be young again? the deader I look the more I’ll need a corpse
career to survive. scratch my undereye ditch with a fork
site of my drunk hope. this script writes itself—
every word I spoke in order.
I’m tired of acting like myself but I can’t sleep
Your choreography is to walk
in reverse until you reach the tree
where you were born, impeding your path.
Singe its roots, now shape your body
to fit inside the hollow coils
what are we? enduring
yet another performance under the amber wash? stuck
in the door jamb of the familiar chamber?
Do the dance where you’re not allowed
to leave the chamber except to practice
holding your breath as you crawl
through fields of static. Repeat
until your lungs soften to an emollient
I intend to remain here until it is so excruciating the whole audience bails.
my advice? never fade away only exit
The human tells the same story
to your face three nights in a row, convinced
you’re a different person each time. While it’s happening
grip your sameness to make it tangible and
exit to the wings, illiterate of death
the only thing I miss about sleep is the rest I don’t miss the beginning
where you have to lower your body to the bed close your eyes
I don’t miss the middle with all the dreams and I don’t miss the end
where you have to open your eyes circle them in coal
and look alive
Caitlyn is an actor and theater instructor from the Bay Area. More info at caitlyntella.com.
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