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The Crush Report

S. steps up to the microphone,

taps it like a cymbal.

Bigshot. Champ-girl. Leading lady.

The crowd, hands on laps,

ears fully lake-like, lets words

swish and foam.

The performer must know

her audience and study them,

their curls, their teeth, their chins.

No gesture is dismissible.

S. thinks to quote the bible

start with what they know

- floods - sacrifice - sibling rivalry -

then takes a step back.

To reclaim the burning refusal

(not her bible)

in an echoing hum, she musters:

hello, I will tell you the story

of how you became a map

positioned quite narrowly

between thumb and pen.

The world feels even more verifiable

now that every lid on every eye is open.

No one else would say it.

S. feels this as a tingling sensation

rising from her wrist, up her arm, to her waist.

A sore pair of eyes has a history of dust,

galling dirt, a piece of sticky lash—these

are forgettable, until you reach in

for the object you most require

and get stuck in a squinting stupor.


Posted 02/22/14
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