He Bags Them Up After

He bags them up after
he watches me give my limbs
to a wood chipper;
a test.
A Loyal Test.
A Bloody True Test.

He knows that we are gambling.
Everything is in.
Stakes are high.

Gangly arms and
gorgeous legs
scratch at him through
It’s not that he doesn’t care to play,
he is convinced.

The taxidermy came.
Took a thousand dollars with
my useful pieces,
said he would come back tomorrow.

I waited.
He waited with me,
with my bloody mess of me.
He poured my tea.
He scented my herbs.
He kept my perfume.
He smiled approvingly at my test.

After sleep cauterized my wounded
I woke to the scent of
constant devotion hovering
around my limbless torso.
Hair brushed, breasts held
firmly in black cotton.
A smile of approval

limbs. Arms, legs,
stripped of death fragrance,
nails painted
with pretty sincerity.

His gift to me.

The Tolley House At Green Gate

I share a broom with Virginia
and Miriam, I
have not had the pleasure
of either of the two
Green Gate

but I know
that their knees squeak louder
than mine
elbow oil lubricates their

I can tell by
the way they leave
my broom settled

terse whisker
mocks my grip,
my sweeping angle.
I try
to lead our waltz but my
broom laughs at me,
certain of my clumsiness.

We fight for direction
over the
Tolley boards
of the old Tolley

Mr. Tolley had taken a wife…

a one-legged chicken farm
who burst babies
all over these elderly boards, then
cleaned them
herself as ten of her children
rolled their deathbeds atop.

Virginia and Miriam must
remind my offensive broom
of Sarah.

Sarah and her discipline.
Sarah and her doctrine.
Sarah and her ten dead babies.

I think my broom is in love with Sarah.

It refuses
my suggestive
movements to clear
old dust from the floors.

I have no choice, I decide.

I toss the broom out
a patio
that hosted a Tolley family portrait once,

grab my very own electronic
sucking machine
and suck the dead babies
out from
woe coated

Plastic Woman

I am taking this body in
on Monday.
It is not sick, but something
is wrong with it.
It did not grow how a woman is supposed to grow.

This body refuses to let a woman grow into a woman!

Mother was given enormous gifts. Too big!
Mother had a box that only
opened to herself. It is not Mother’s fault, though.
This body is a betrayer!
Ever since this body was young – forced to
lay down
with a man in a cement hall, it’s tongue burdened
with his suspicion – It should have been
beheaded for treason!

Oh well! On Monday, the sun will rise, (unless it does not), and
I will pick up this unloyal body
and throw it at the surgeon and he will
make it into a woman!