let the blood tell it
Hammer to the anvil,
hoof to the gut.
The sound of life getting in the way of itself,
of plans becoming irrelevant.
In my dreams you bleed like a stuck pig
as hopeless as roadkill.
In my dreams, I call you by your first name.
The bus drives past your house and I think
of all the ways a person can hurt themselves.
All the ways you can be poisoned.
How do you mourn the loss of yourself?
The cold house, the unhappy marriage,
unremembering the smell of chocolate cake and blood.
The body betrays you,
parts of it turn to stone.
You are a collection of everything that has happened to you,
and guts and blood and bone.
What will remain of you once you’re dead?
What do you know how to do with your hands?
Let the blood tell it.
You load the gun
You load the gun and I’ll fire it.
You hold my head under the water,
and I’ll like it.
I’ll believe that I can breathe,
and that way it won’t be your fault
when I drown.
It is never your fault.
You won’t get what you want,
because one day I’ll realise not everyone is keeping score.
Everything is essential,
until it isn’t.
I am glad you aren’t the sort of person
who knows what accidental blood looks like
blossoming in the bath.
I like water so much more than fire.
today I will restrain myself,
pretend to be normal as rain
Your muscle memory of wrongness
lets you down again.
finds safety outside of itself -
sets your house alight
tells you to go home.
Bethany Goodwill is a Medway-based poet, and one half of the Rochester poetry night Big Trouble. They completed the Contemporary MA at the University of Kent in 2017 and have been a regular in the Kent poetry scene since.
They write about death and being in people’s cars, and they can be found at bethany-jay.tumblr.com.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.