For further reference: I go to love
like a fire engine to a three-alarm,                              flashing

and spinning, yelling across town. Nothing
to be afraid of: the ceiling falling,                                windows 

concave, doors bowed and stiff. My body 
parts fall to, like I was made                                        of the heat. 

Everyone watches, chest-clutching, pointing. 
Inhalation will surely be the cause of                         my death.

Urban myth says an aging vagina once
well-used will shrink from lack                                    of exercise.

I would think, instead, like the collar of a sweater,
stretched, gaping. Or a fish out                                   of water,

grasping for purchase. A soft pop every time
you check to see whether or not                                 it is dead.

I want a song to be written about me: black
pearls, sulfur, bronze-plated silver.                             It should 

have a verse about blood-soaked hands,
a chorus that is a shout of                                            AAAAAHHHHH!

[Sing it with me:                                                              AAAAAHHHHH!]

It won’t be a song where someone stares into 
lit windows from the end of a driveway                     on the last note.

Related Poems

Self-Portrait as a Body, a Sea

I am a body schooling,
a ball of fish, flashing
and many, in these early days
of feeling, of love.

When I learned,
hours ago, of fish songs
that swell like birdsong
in the morning,

how they foghorn or buzz
for food, or mates
or space, I thought,
now aren’t I a humming thing?

Yes, you say,
a body of oceans
and marvelous.

And the sea anemone in me,
              growing on the wreckage
of an old ship—

              can they grow that way,
              I wonder, on an ending—

                          Still this bright and tentacled
anthozoan polyp,
              which reaches and filters
                                                            whatever it needs
                          from this strong current,
              and the current too that carries
                                                            the sea cucumbers,
              the rough mammals,
                          the life, both vertebrate
                                                            and invertebrate,
even the batfish,
                          the black jewfish,
              and the terapontid,

it all swells and breaks in me
like a chorus at dusk.

Did anyone ever ask any one of Nikita’s daughters

after Alexander Pushkin

Did anyone ever ask any one of Nikita’s daughters
if they wanted a vagina from the devil’s basket.
conjured by a witch and stored with so little ice.
an organ that had been ridden cross-country on
horseback. had no mind of its own and had flown
up into the trees with all thirty-nine to get stuck up
in the leaves. Clearly not queer at all given that it flew
down at the site of any old whatsit. and furthermore
not even to fuck it, just to crawl back into a box
like the whatsit wanted of the crew of thingums. Witch
only knows how many grimy fingers the poor things
endured. No one asked the tzar’s daughters
if they wouldn’t rather be holeless, lipless and better
unbewitched by devil and hag and flasher
envoy and kingly pop than to lift their skirts
to anyone wanting to see what was missing. or unmissed.


"...women don't want the men to go into the bush because the women will only be raped but the men will be killed...I have seen a woman who was caught in the bush by several men. They tied her legs to two trees while she was standing. They raped her many times and before leaving her they put stones in her vagina..."

—Abshiro Aden Mohammed, Kenya, 2000 Dagahaley Somali Refugee Camp from A Camel for the Son by Fazal Sheik

Before leaving her they put stones in her vagina
The men will only be raped but the stones will be killed
The bush caught many men to go into the stones
The stones will be killed by several trees before leaving
The bush tied the men to the trees in their vaginas
Before bush go to trees they kill many stones
Many men will be caught by the trees in the bush
Several trees will be raped by the bush and killed
Only the caught men will be stoned and bushed by the trees
Several men were caught by the trees before leaving
The men will be killed but the stones will only be treed
The stones put many trees into the men's killed vaginas
By the bush, the trees were raped only several times
Before leaving, the vaginas were seen standing in the stones