an Aotearoa poetry journal | ISSN 2744-3248

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Tarot #07
Tarot #06
Tarot #05
Tarot #04
Tarot #03
Tarot #02
Tarot #01

in the living room among friends.


i want to tear open my neck, unzip my ribs,
unwrap the length of my lungs and name
the streets with my veins as i untangle
myself from the spine; i want to squeeze
my eyes shut until the final pus of grief
bleeds along the lines of my flailing skin—
drought of oceans, deserts in the scorch
of the quiet: oh, the silence, taped over
my mouth: i am kidnapped in my own home,
a hostage in my own body, a son without
a father
let me etch his name along the rims
of coffee-stained mugs and the yellowed
petals: oh, to be the nectar of my flowers
the flies are drunk with.


i’d talk, but it’ll be like sweeping an elephant
under the year-old carpet we bought when we
got the house; when we speak, we dodge its
silhouette, tip-toeing around the linen like under
a faulty chandelier; and at any moment it swerves
its trunk—when it sneezes, it is a broken waterfall
of coffees and crackers over the wooden edge of our
new table; and then the clink and the clash of
ceramics and cups, and pretending like the elephant
disappeared—like the dead had forgotten to die—
but in the caffeine-tainted air and marble hot water,
the husks have found a song in my chest.