My body is getting too big for my clothes
My heart is getting too small for my body
My metaphors are getting too easy for my poems
My problem is getting too body for my mind
My mind is getting too closed, like my heart
My metaphors are getting too close to similes
I am becoming like a simile
Like a simile, I am becoming
My poems are getting too meta for me
My hands salted to crack across my swollen belly
My problem is getting too big for its poem
My body is getting too metaphor for my body
My problem is getting to my heart
The dust of my life
has gathered on the window sills
and on the spinning fan blades
that scatter small bits like
a pepper grinder.
A stack of mail sits on the counter
so deep and long
I have forgotten its purpose.
Syllabi gather like a congress
of old friends who have turned
Where did I find this need
to shred the evidence of my existence,
to cast off the unnecessary fragments
that other people probably
paste in well-meaning scrapbooks?
that our earliest ancestors bloomed
in Sulphur, bubbled from magma.
In the distant distance, we labored
hydrogen like stars.
Daily, we still burn hot, tasting metal
on our tongues.
That our organism formed in calm pools
was a kind fiction
when any mirror reflects four billion years
of banking embers in cells’ braziers.
Devon Balwit is a poet and educator from Portland, Oregon. She has a chapbook, Forms Most Marvelous, forthcoming from dancing girl press (summer 2017). Her recent poems can be found in: Oyez, The Cincinnati Review, Red Paint Hill, The Ekphrastic Review, Noble Gas Quarterly, Timberline Review, Trailhead Magazine, Vector, and Permafrost.
Why do these hills waver
walks across them
and oranges ripen
Get the ones from Cherra
I say, the baskets over ripe
as bystander haggles
I haggle with winter
it’s pristine charm
run down memories
compelling me to wear
coats of dust, hidden
dreams, mufflers stained
with marks of wine
I drank on evenings
Little ones ripple with laughter
Crows caw, caw
my mind sinks into horizons
of a hill town which I ask
Man, that was hilarious and scary
all at the very same time.
At one point, you actually ran
up that big bastard’s back
like he was a fucking stepladder.
You’d have made it out too,
if you hadn’t have slipped
in that beer puddle.
Anyway, two of your mates,
with the green and red mohawks
just came out 5 minutes before you.
They headed over the road
to The Winston Churchill.
Christ, you’re a bit more banged-up
(Excuse the pun!) and bruised
than when they nabbed you last night.
Sure, help yourself, fuck it, have two…
they’re Regal King Size.
Nice to meet you, by the way…
they’ll be talking about you lot
for weeks ‘round this place.
My Treacle thinks you’re hot,
in an insane kind of way,
but, she’s never had any taste.
Eh? No, no, it was a joke…
I’m fucking married to it, mate, innit!
Powerful men with a troubled
pasts and no future excite her.
Guys with red devil tattoos on
their biceps and broken, bleeding
hearts above the groin. Badges
of honor earned the hard way
along with scars from knife fights
and stolen half ton trucks wrecked
at full impact, in flight, cross county,
pursuits. Safe behind bars in Max,
no hope for parole, three times lost,
consecutive felony convictions safe.
So unlike the actual men in her life:
home, drunk, pissing themselves in
the night, hog farting snores and
swamp thing body odor stench.
She feels body heat just writing
her locked up man’s name and if
he was a killer, so much the better.
She can come just hearing his voice
and there are no marks after,
no broken bones, statements taken
except, I Do, when the justice of
the peace asks if you will take this
man to be your lawfully wedded husband.
So what if it doesn’t end well.