Still womanly
darkly behind panes
of transparency, like the primaeval
maneuverability, the viewer feels
there’s nothing that owns the hummus kiss
of this unburst timeskin
in which not even spine
nor nerve end is needed, being shaped not
by colorfastness or thalamus but the alacritous increep
that converts molecules into otherwise but not elsewhere, here
approaching a near boneless held-fastness that in fat succulence
of smutwomb airlessness gets tighter and rarer becoming what
vanishes skull but leaves every hair in place, takes back the ribs
but leaves the soft heart whole. The viewer closes her
eyes, opens their sticky lids on the inner side,
fluttering translucent sheets of membrane
down, down to sateen intestines, shook
as with fern breath, feels her own body as cloth,
bit of hide, soul a thread count or curing brine. Feels herself
a nimbus of epidermis floating low above her own boneography, she
rains down acid bedding her self stones into soft folds of her self leather
of saltwind blown through wetlands and seeped down, down, folding in, she
holds for a beat, peels eyes open. On the far window pane, raindrops spin
red light of leaving cars. Parking lot near empty. How it is body inside,
tickets out front. And under the skin a collapse of frame and canvas, this
vascular rorschach, allover rawhide of someone was and someone is
altogether. The viewer blinks. A body wants what is saved
analogically in the anaerobic below. It wants a bog spread
open like a moth’s body with pins. Against the window
the blinking raindrop, prophecy of more mirrors.
It wants an opera in distillation, webbed dewdrops,
a renewal of honeybees among the field of fears that do
not break you, change your tissue, wash and oil you
relentless in breathless hospitality, bridal
chamber where hard bones fall away
and the terrible softness takes
and is taken still moist
in my mouth an iron age
strand of golden hair.

item #13533

title: viewer & bog body & other collapses
form: concrete poetry
index: brooke larson

Brooke Larson holds an MFA in Creative Nonfiction from Columbia University, and is currently a PhD student in Poetry at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. Her poems and essays have recently appeared in The Offbeat, Foothill Journal, Gravel, the Swamp, and Dialogue Journal, and she was runner-up for the 2017 Tennessee Williams Poetry Prize. Often, she runs away to teach primitive survival skills as a wilderness guide in Arizona’s Sonoran Desert.