Sometimes my lust insists on repulsive objects,
prods me like an incessant elbow to the boob.
The complacent, lank-haired man who got up at the last
open mic and delivered, in a booming monotone,
a seemingly endless “short” story embellished
with multiple, gratuitous sexual assaults sits down
next to me. I loathe him, but my system mistranslates
that emotion, reverses the polarity. My skin
wants to touch his gross hair. My skin wants
to crawl away from itself. It has been so long
since it has been touched by anyone.
It’s beyond hungry, would eat just about anything
at this point but knows better than to gnaw
at something who might actually fill me up.
As a teenager, I wore a rubber band on my wrist
for snapping to chastise errant desires.
At the time, I viewed all titillation as repulsive –
for the same reason we wretch at the stench
of spoiled meat: because it could kill us.
I was a child. I was supposed to become an adult.
But an adult would have been a different
person. Therefore, the child would no longer
be. Therefore, the child would die. Therefore
I snapped the rubber band, to keep myself alive.
I am adult now, so I guess it didn’t work.
Someone kissed me there, on the wrist, once.
I loved her at the time. I do not love her now.
I suppose many of me have died.
I am a cemetery dripping with vines, thicketed,
nearly impassable, and I wish a couple
would sneak in at dusk and fuck against the mausoleum.
When my breasts started budding, I thought
they were tumors. I died and was buried
in my chest. I was buried between my hips.
Someone found me with a finger once,
and I screamed bloody murder. I want to nibble
on the bad writer’s hair. One of me
is punishing me. Or they all are, for letting them
end like this, un-eulogized, with no one
to visit their graves. My crotch is haunted.
Only the brave and the foolish dare enter.
I can’t have company until I dispel the spirts.
But it would be so lonely in here without me.
Owen Lubozynski is a freelance writer and editor living in the Twin Cities. Copy is her bread and butter; poetry is her jam.