I had a gun it was shaped like love
except it didn’t tremble.
It gave me warmth as I walked across campus,
concealed under my eyelashes.
My looks could kill.
And peace was a white thing.
An enemy in blue jeans standing on the corner of Snelling with a raw food smoothie and a sign thing.
I couldn’t hear anyone
over the nuclear bomb in the room
so I yelled for the hell of it,
sent my words out like kamikaze bombers
or gardeners in the wrong garden,
rocking plants suckin on radiation water,
dying fatherly deaths.
I was ready for war,
even as my brass knuckled belly grew large.
The revolution was pregnant
the color of Joseph’s coat in my naked embrace,
a soft sword
as he saved me,
and i split open, imagining
how we’re gonna win this
with his skin my skin and our breathless connection.
I had a lover he kissed like columbus.
A tongue like three ships
and he smelled like used cannons
but he bore gifts.
We threw so many starfish back into our bed
we skinny dipped slept with good intentions
until the waters churned with his deep dark curses
and I had to wake him before he murdered
someone in his dreams.
He has 9 scars and only 7 stories.
He went to jail he got out of jail he called me from a pay phone
said my eyes were like all four seasons
and he buckled in the parking lot talking bout
I had a son he thought I was the sun.
He woke up and looked over
and if I rose the day had begun.
Some mornings I was so angry
i burnt myself to a crisp
and my charred lips
could not even offer a
So we slept in,
letting life fake it.
Gonna be brave
just gimme a minute.
I dropped cast iron fists on my forehead,
hope somewhere in the squeezed hot middle of them
and my son,
who does not miss a bird,
a single ray through the curtain,
or a heart worth breaking,
cocked his head like a horizon
and squinted through my grip.
He’s still there,
smiling on the bedside, waking.