Autobiography

I

For years
my throat
strangled
mute by
cold daddies
and mean men
Nazi teachers
indifferent
listless
lovers
and husbands
out of town
sisters
dogmatic
or fair
children
always hungry
and friends
who come with
the sound of silver
jangling
in their empty
pockets.

II

Always in night
temples alone
I picked petals
and dropped
them balanced
point to point
quiver against
rage
my blood dripping
down the altar
midnight eucharist
the poem
my sacrament
and daily
resurrection.

III Cannibalism

Your fork pricking
my flesh you said
you wanted to eat
me bite by bite.
I thought it
metaphor
but now in the
cold night
shadows of your
neon marquee
your story
told in bold type
my words ripped
from the page
lying flat
I know
there is
nothing left
electrified death
a crushed S
in my hand
screaming, “Give
them back.”

IV Love

With my face smashed
at the wall you
said love
and crushed a
response from me
a moan
you thought it
pleasure
my last breath
flattened out of
me by the weight
of your self-gratification.
The sound of your dreams
and the silhouette
of your back
too familiar now
I ‘d rather sleep
alone.

9/17/76

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