"My Brain is a Book of Celebrity Horoscopes and Snapple Cap Facts"

by Raven Halle

I read on the underneath of a Snapple lemon tea cap
              that wombats subsist entirely on their own melancholy,
that their cottony bodies are just small gods living
              between selves, kneeling before the same sadness that swells
their bellies like a four-course vegetable dinner

              plus dessert, and I think it makes sense for a Taurus
like Jeffrey Dahmer to love lemon flavored things but not
              the actual fruit, though he was one—bitter stiff boys
in a freezer better dismembered than remembered. When
              I find out that Ellen Degeneres is an Aquarius I already know

her fruit of choice is the sweetness between her wife Portia’s legs,
              and I treat this peach tea cap like a forecast or a fortune cookie
because I’ve been axed by a man’s landmine hands, so much
              shivering that it’s still hard for me to be fucked by my girlfriend
even though her fist fits around my neck like pearls, tight

              enough to leave me choking on the green tea with the cap
that reads PTSD is an acronym for the same reason BDSM is, meaning
              that we nickname the truths that crack our mouths when
they’re too hard to crack using them, like the coconut tea cap
              which says the Mona Lisa gained fame only after she was robbed

from the Louvre’s wall because people worshipped the sacred
              blank space carved by her leaving the same way they listened
to “Back to Black” back-to-back in an attempt to fill the inky
              Virgo sized Amy Winehouse shaped gap that was there only after
she wasn’t, and I wish I could tell both Amy and my mother

              what I learn from the mango tea cap—that human saliva contains
a painkiller more potent than morphine—because maybe then
              Amy would live and my mother wouldn’t rather have
drugs than a house in the same state as me, but the past
              is a needle itching toward my skin, and I’m a chess piece

on a bored God’s board with a cathedral of ears in my lap
              like an omen: Here, says the apple cap, stars are wounds stabbed
into the fabric of the universe, murmuring about mothballs
              in sock drawers and flesh resurrected by a Polaroid’s slow unroll,
the war long over and the dead piled up like lonely wedding dresses.

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