If you’re a bent nail, everyone
looks like a hammer
Some moons I want to see again faces’ planes hewn sharp under the cottonwood
shadow her busted ankle half gone shoe in my lap.
Her breath’s heat a riverthat sticking to the skin withoutthe blank benefit of verbs. I
wanted to know where war goes when it leaves. What coughed up aphorisms washed up
after whowas lost in the flood. Part our confessions into piles.Comb-tugged
cut and pastesuffices in their stadium.
They say that there’s snow on the hillside still; that is how they catch you. It is said the light
ones don’t break through the crust. That bluebells bloom for a week in May and an
hour in winter, invisibly. Plate of mother knife of father finger of lace week of icicles
yearof bridges with no water under dam with no water above. Learn to act
out the long whinecute. What do your brokenankles/hymens say about the
patriarchy? Pleasecomment below.
Decade as oval where face would go. They weren’t wrong when they said ruthless
ontology but didn’t know where I snuck the bittersour cardamom. Every cupboard some
long backstory. I’m boring holes into us. I’m boring please like my flagrant sunsetting
as how the desert talks in me still: I wanted I afraid I chain I glut hill slid I I I
coughlaugh twist in the grimy air between shirt and skin.
Tradition is told is we give her a bracelet when she’s born a crown when she leaves we
mob against dark open circuits spark this is one way to describe our relationship.
Another way is there’s no our, everyone in the dream is me, in the room is me, stadium choked
with me; I write relationship poems single for years.
Oh sweet homogenization comeback with your pliable references & triangle translations.
Girl, try your luck against the disposably incomed. Augment my trauma with
kale. Little peanut butter plea blur the burned bridge sharpen the milkteeth. Sell the cans.
Tag the tribe. How queerwe lie against their screen.
Crick in neck crook in attic. By which the factory is both tract and parry. Syncopathic the first
job the milk truck the bread line the smokestack where the light fell close like a shawl
around a neck, the hospital room where the light fell closed like a noose around a
neck. What am I supposed to do with all this light please vote in the comments.
Girl still as air above a lake,girl like girl, dole on thedole out bad advice till the buzz hits.
By which they serve you cheaper, grin. By which they shut the opening, shunted in
the medicine. Hold still for their cameras kid—if you blur, they can’t catch you.
NINA PURO’s current work addresses rupture and queer precarity. It can be found in Guernica, H_NGM_N, and the PEN American Poetry Series, among others. A member of the Belladonna* Collaborative, Nina is author of two forthcoming chapbooks (Argos Books and dancing girl press) and recipient of fellowships from the MacDowell Colony and Syracuse University. Nina cries and works in Brooklyn.