And This is How I Let Go

a poem by Jackie Colquitt

Bloated sky has burped a powder blue
Over the night prior;
Thank God.
The water was up to my chest
Pancake ribs
Maple blood;
Can you tell
I’m trying to resuscitate
A thing dead at the genesis?
Reverse revival to
Long forgotten senses.
I have never learned language
I communicate by twitch and fidget.
I weep to see
I vomit to taste
I bleed to feel;
Cornerstone of man.
The body is treated
On a cold metal table
On Memorial Day.
I wish it knew.
Nobody claps for a loser.
And loss is as easy as
Having nobody witness success.
I’m saying I’m alive
And yes
I’ve noticed.
Every day past the day i thought
I’d have left
And I have stayed instead,
I have noticed the cardiovascular metronome
Persisting into summer
after summer
after summer.
I shredded the evidence

Because i never want to be backlit.
Without proof,
It is an imaginary recovery
Against the backdrop of
Prolonged relapse.
And the background is a sheet
And the background is green
And I am allowed an illusion
Hung low in hammock
Middle of field
Fat sun getting fatter
And me,
Feigning relief.

animals are afraid of the things bigger than them and this is why a cat arches it back
I slide the windowpane off of an eyelid
A ledge is a door is a ledge
I have swallowed the knob
And you will clap goddammit.
Where can i jump without someone leaping to save me
Where can i jump and be ignored
Because I want
To mourn the fact
That they couldn’t have done
To stop me.
And is this the demon that I am trying to exorcise?
With hooves and a copper tail and teeth like cliffs?
And what if it is?
What if I bit into the side of the earth
And all you could do was watch;
Would you?
Would you stare into me
Like a clock?
Would you stay long enough
For me to digest my food
And ask me how everything was?

“Thank you, it was terrible.
It was terrible.
It was terrible.
It was terrible.”

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