coping mechanism and How will you begin?

Patrycja Humienik

coping mechanism

gripping the silken
        machinery of language. assemblage of
                                  fictions. how they make shelter. construct
                sky almost-violet. vibrant only at the edges.

                        if you could see the edge. you would climb there.
                                        i nearly did myself. having wanted to erase
                                shitty memories. so wanting ravages me. see

                                        how wretched wanting can be.
                        the storm seizing cars, entire houses, ancient trees
                                from the puckering earth. what does it say about me
                that i can picture myself there, held by air, watching.

How will you begin?
Left foot into the stirrup, swing my right leg over
Larkspur, jonquil, rhododendron
Sing the second song that comes to mind; slip the first into memory’s crater
Beeswax & myrrh
Demand the fog tell how
Feel myself a stone at the bottom of a well—no, the sea
It has to do with extremities
Don’t mention nightmares
Throw open the curtains the way my mother did, perhaps her mother & her mother before
Go to the lake
Arrange the fragments in something like a vase

Patrycja Humienik is a Polish-American writer and movement artist based in Seattle, WA. Her poetry is featured/forthcoming in Passages North, Four Way Review, Hobart, The BoilerThe Shallow Ends, and Sporklet, among others. She serves as assistant poetry editor for Newfound and events director for The Seventh Wave. Find Patrycja on twitter @jej_sen.

Originally published in Moss: Volume Six.

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