Cicadas

Image by Jenny Dodge

 

I turn off the shower and

long to follow the water down the drain

it stares up between my feet

what a promise!

 

instead, I chew what I’ve bitten,

my gums raw from feeble attempts

to scrape the day out of my mouth.

spitting blood can be so casual

 

in moments of hollow solitude

I forget the smell of Her

it’s a strange sense of panic and dread

I call to my Copper friend across the sea

she cries like we’re a room apart

 

a sister, not by blood or choice

but chance

a lucky spell binding our wrists

like fading scars

our friends pretend not to notice

 

I wonder, as her mother lights

the Sabbath candles,

if in our last life, we shared a body

I the bone and she the flesh

she is softer, and yet

holds me upright

 

hark! She knocks–

Let her in! Let her in!

Goddess, a shaky rapture, knocking at my heart

what a promise, what a dream

we sip religion like wine on a Friday night

I like the taste but know the warm feeling

is as real as my mother’s presence

 

Copper calls the day after a year

we take turns admitting to

molting over and over,

cicadas, attempting to lose

our nymphette selves

 

we admit to finding leaks

in our thoughtlessness

and watching our words get lost

like water down a drain

 

perhaps, next we meet

I’ll have new skin, and she new bones

but may our song erupt in the air

we die a thousand tiny deaths

and still, we return each year

like rain

like the hour

like the chorus of bugs

in summer months

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