Tuesday, July 12, 2005

3 Poems Erin Martin

planting rubber bullets

If the gift you’re seeking is a magician’s hat, if you

have memorized the word because, allow me
not to be the one to build temples on your tongue.
If you are crossing off tallies as if your ink were
I do not think I can use this chisel. I have played
my records loudly. I have sent paper boats to sea.
There are no graves but graves. If you would mistake
fear for peace, I will laugh in all the wrong places.
I have raised my fist trembling through
lipstick. I have thanked my skin. If you would
your camp on the tallest peak, I will take off my
my gauze, my ghost sheet. I have seen you
kick in snow angels. If you would project
filmstrips from the sky, I will open my locket again.

If you would hide clocks within books of prayers,
I will spoil the ending of this movie.

barger street at thirty watts

got no middle name
and the chandelier sways

fuck me on an old mattress
till the cows come home

want to cut out your tongue
and stick it in a hole

Page of Words

Dead bolt latched in this hotel room,
Carpet showing years of foot traffic
Bay window, no ocean view,
sunlight scattering far wall.

I will not go to Mardi Gras this year
I write, then sign my real name
in the white space,

turn the postcard over, imagine you
holding this glossy cardboard picture
of my hotel and wondering

how well I sleep without you
to stifle my yawns and wake me
with the reveille of poetry
your voice staining the lyric like coffee
bruising a page of words.

Dried flowers on the nightstand,
cereal in sealed plastic squares
You could have given me glass unicorns to ride
put the moon in Scorpio, doused my lips in champagne

I could have counted my blessings
on your fingers and toes
built you sand castles with giant moats
and crowned myself queen of your ocean.

But in a year of your summers
I would surely give myself away
cutting into your dreaming
till my human voice wakes you and I drown.