It’s a Nasty Habit and I’m Trying to Quit

By HOLLY BURDORFF

 

I thought you were dead.

On your Facebook wall,

well-wishes and then nothing.

The mitosis of what if:

worries twirl and spiral

and settle into clock-cogs

which lock and jam.  

The metal creaks and smacks.

Spins, orbits, pulses.

My fingers catch, my nails bleed.

I couldn’t pick you out of a lineup now.

I hope you’ve found

your still pile of bones

to rub against.

You filled my lungs

with asterisks and commas

and lately I fear my cunt

is a dying star. I fear

it is packing to leave me.

Please know you’re allowed

to remember me by things

other than bacon

and my forgetting to turn off the lights.

I want you to remember

the time we folded a summer sun

into a winter sky and sewed

sequins onto strangers’ shoes.

Not by my constant pleas:

drive safe, come inside me, 

open this jar. I remember you

by your hair, spare straw

in a November field.

And by your soft uncorking of wine,

like grandpas popping cheeks at toddlers.

If you come back,

I’ll tongue-kiss you where your legs meet,

conjure tempests

when you’re sun-sick & weary.

I’ll twist under you

like rosepetals dropped into a creek.

 

[Purchase Issue 13 here]

Holly Burdorff is an MFA candidate at the University of Alabama. She serves as art and design editor for Black Warrior Review and as director of the VIDA Count, and her poems appear in inter|rupture, POOL, Pittsburgh Poetry Houses, and Duende.

Julia PikeIt’s a Nasty Habit and I’m Trying to Quit

Related Posts

stairs staircase

Corey

MIK AWAKE
Became a skinhead / a year after he moved from / Bumblefucktucky. / Hit me with his cast. / Hurt people hurt people / often with their hurt parts. / Who broke his arm? / His step-dad step on him? / They was poor, but they was white. / A black eye was the only / color he brought to art class. /

Toronto Author Photo

Ask a Local: Kai Cheng Thom, Toronto

There is a deep history of violence and cultural genocide here, punctuated by brief moments of collaboration and solidarity. This is never more apparent to me than when I am on the subway, where the vast diversity of Toronto's racial and cultural communities throngs together, and the historical power dynamics, class tensions, and intense humanity of it all comes to a head.

The Common logo (black box) in between POETRY and FEATURE, in white print on a light green background

November 2017 Poetry Feature

SEBASTIAN MATTHEWS
There’s something a little creepy about attending so completely, incessantly, to trauma. Something masochistic about it. But what was I supposed to do? I am a writer, a processor, a worrier. The first lines of a poem came to me in the ICU.