For You Blue
I pick through grass in the yard like a dog.
I tell her in confidence I’m destined to make
meaning from nothing. Her pride is splitting
her through in two; I flee from sight.
That which I cannot control must be my own fault.
Don’t look as I empty myself into
the hollow bowl of her ear. She tells me
the future but only the bad. That cold
slick feel in the heels of her gut comes in
round her ears and pulls her down. We’re growing
like mangroves, rubbing dirt in our ears. When did
I start to fear for her? It trickles
down her neck, slow shame, dried
saltlike, a film of bodily terror.
In the morning we sit and forget what the night brought.
My rage, steel-toed, and you’re sobbing. The light
slips and shatters from under your door. Through
my fingers, just out of reach. I wish
for a kind of learned deliverance I know
will never come. And now I am afraid
of forgetting these things I’d felt
in the past, how the blood under my nails tasted the next
morning, how my stomach flipped. Oh but I want
to be buried inside the moment, always. I grasp at
a night on the roof with you, tapping ash onto
the railing. Breathing you in then out. We listened
to the nothing of the street and felt peaceful.
I’m walking uphill
when it starts in earnest.
Things flood past before
I feel them, faces that gleam
white and dissolve, gone, and I
can never stitch my hands together
like a fisherman’s net and catch them
fast enough. I chance a moment
without my umbrella. I examine
my glossy reflection as
it’s shattered by a car:
I was so alone today that
I cut my own hair with a
pair of scalloped scissors
tucked away the gore in
a plastic bag and felt no one
would notice my digression
my mother had a fringe
over her high forehead
like a helmet of soft velvet
until one day she unfurled and
it seemed she had never hidden not
once I walk now with half of
my expressions veiled I am sick
of having a face
Ankita Chatterjee is a student at UC Berkeley whose work has appeared most recently in Barren Magazine. In her free time, she daydreams.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.