AftermathAn old work bootAftermath by ClamShellHeart
in a field of bay leaves-
they swelled up around it after a winter,
bitter, abandoned, alone.
They pierced the skin.
When it bit at them, they cut
the tongue, grew up
through the eyes
until it was blind.
Nearby my bare feet
had thorns between bare toes,
reaching in under nails and sneaking around bones.
Burrs tugged on my lungs, I think
I was still alive, flowerless tangles of rose
in my hair that had grown long.
Ice crystalized in a steady wave
across my skin, then fingers plunged
deep into the tissue.
A rabbit burrowed behind my ribs
for the heat in my heart.
When the seasons turned, a child
kicked the anthill
where my brain used to be.
escape1escape by ClamShellHeart
The taste of blood and crushed tea leaves,
ground together against my cheek,
the witches brew to put the fires out.
You almost get used to the smell of crusted blood
around the ears and flaking skin
of your nostrils.
It’s almost like
fruit rotting in a plastic bag,
bruising under the weight
of it’s own skin.
that’s what it feels like some days.
If this were the escape ship
my pod would only hold me
and I’d never see you.
With a backpack full of granola bars
I’d move across the universe
with my arms floatingfalling out of my shoulders,
biting holes in my lips to
stop the sounds
from bouncing back
and cutting me.
We passed a dead cow
stuffed full of expired resumés
on the drive down.
Wouldn’t you know it I left
my self esteem
in the shape of a notebook
in the drawer next to my bed.
You arrived a little more than a year ago
when my hair was still long;
it froze to the consistency of straw in the cold air.
I follow you now,
in a lolling
Sleeping HoundsIf I’m lucky it’ll be a weird one.Sleeping Hounds by ClamShellHeart
Cast off the paper I wear under my clothes,
shirts shaped like coffins,
If I’m lucky, today I’ll be undone,
There are hounds sleeping on every stone
in the boneyard full of
melting crayola tombs.
The sleeping dogs will open their eyes if I don’t come alone,
There are loudspeakers in the clouds telling me I can’t come in.
I am dirty and fraying,
bleached and stained.
I stop at the doormat and leave my skin,
I pull the handle of my resting place and slide behind the wheel.
The pedals are cymbals and snares,
fire laps at my yellow wallpaper hands.
I take too-big shoes off feet too tired to feel,
There are sleeping hounds on every stone,
two and three heads on each pair of shoulders
breathing out wind
and leaves that go straight through my bones