Farting Knees II: Talking to My Lover

By MAKHOSAZANA XABA

 

When I vomit
it will be through my forehead.
Be warned, stand far off
because the vomit will not spare you.  

My ears oscillate.
Catch them when they hit against your head
or else I won’t hear you,
the piece of story
you need to share.

My eyes, in and out of their sockets
see intermittently.
They shoot out in your presence.
Will them into their sockets, if you dare.
Paste them back, if you can.
Talk to them, if you care.

My ribs grind over my spine
to eliminate my heart
that speaks a foreign language.
A heart that’s selling out,
saying I love you
even when you don’t.

My nipples too are selling out.
They engrave your name
on my abdominal wall.
Sentimental, they need a memory.

I’m freezing memory out.
It’s better without reminders.
I don’t want my nipples to finish the inscription.

The splinters of my ass
fly into the wind,
so that even you
will never remember
what it was that made you say
I have the most beautiful ass.

My knees fart faster and faster,
expel fuller and fuller,
keeping up the pressure
so my torso won’t collapse,
amidst the rapidly rising, head splitting stench
of vomited innards.

My knees fart,
my amputated arms roll,
my ribs grind.
Gallant soldiers
they know to hold their own
against your persistent indecision.

Thanks to my farting knees
and my concrete thighs
I am still upright.
It wouldn’t be so
If it weren’t for my knees.

 

 

Makhosazana Xaba is the author of These Hands and Tongues of Their Mothers.

Click here to purchase Issue 04

Farting Knees II: Talking to My Lover

Related Posts

july 2020 poetry feature

July 2020 Poetry Feature: Steven Leyva and Elizabeth Scanlon

STEVEN LEYVA
Get down to the smallest birthright / I cannot claim: say beignets / and doesn’t the stutter of hot oil start / to sizzle the small plates of memory? / Faces powdered with sugar, no thought / to whose ancestors cut which cane, sing / a hymn of “mmm, mmm, mmm.”

Illustration of dolphin

July 2020 Poetry Feature: Loren Goodman

LOREN GOODMAN
In these last hours / Of the Passover Seder / It is said by the higher / Chasidic Scholars that time / Loses its essence and that / We are at least once, with / The help of memory (at this / Time “even the future can be / Remembered”) able to defeat / It. Something to do / With the wine.

Skyline cropped

Goddamn

MORIEL ROTHMAN-ZECHER
The chunk of the ball / On the cracked blacktop / And our torsos so covered / In sweat nearby the sea / Swells and the smell seeps / Into our hair and the air / Turns into night all around us / And the pebbles of the ball / Still tickle our palms as smoke / Trickles into our lungs...