I tie myself to the good-girl mast
but it’s a punctured raft on land.
Golden grass stains both my knees.
I say sorry. I say thank you.
I say please.
I wait for someone to untie the knots.
It’s not a question of show or tell.
It’s not a question.
If I set fire to the image. Fire clears the land
of excess. But the mind remains
The forest knows
there are needed fires,
and fires birthed by selfishness.
In “Self-Deceit #1,” Francesca Woodman, naked
on all fours, curves her torso around a desolate corner,
toward a square mirror against the wall.
Looking down. Averting her own gaze.
Some eruptions start small in us.
I like to think I could feel the blood quicken.
Rage seems ordinary, easy enough.
But it takes something from you to
The volcano I live near could take me
out, make ash the last word.
Parts of me are dying.
I don’t have to walk the cemeteries
to speak to them.
To hide or seek might look the same.
What I’m looking for