DIRTY LOVE

Build me an inky sky
filled with stars
the ones that remind you of me
their light, their distance
then take me to the ocean
tell me you know I am the ocean
how you love that about me
my vastness and you never wish
to contain me Braid my hair
in the terrifying electric
darkness let neon lilacs
push up past your pupils
then kiss me with your whole
being let me puncture something
I want to see you dirty
I want to see you wanting

#73

The tomatoes look just like me
swollen and holey
ants crawling in and out of every
crevice, taking what they need.

I am looking
at the clouds
waiting as my insides
feed hundreds of mouths.

This skin, sun stained
perfuming. Will the birds
come for what’s left of me
and how far from here
will they take me?

Let it be far and
let it be soon.

NO SAFE WORD

the morning after the first
time you sleep with someone
you realize you were without
one but it’s only now you
feel terrified

#37

I bite into a peach and understand
why you want so violently

WHAT BEATS BETWEEN MY THIGHS IS THE OCEAN

so it makes sense
why you always say
you want to go swimming
even in winter
especially in winter
you’re an animal
like me
who wants

TODAY’S THE DAY

Today we are so in love and going to the post office.
We are going to the post office and buying forever stamps
and placing them on our lips. We are placing forever
stamps on our lips and they have an image of an extremely elaborate
and deliciously looking cake on them. And then we are kissing.
We are kissing and shouting FOREVER! with extremely elaborate and deliciously wet
postage stamps on our lips. And people will congratulate us!
And someone will throw us a baby!
And the baby will grow up and meet someone it loves!
And someone it loves and our baby will go to the post office together
to buy forever stamps but the post office will be forever sold out.

WOMAN THING

How lucky
to be split
in this way to let
nectar spill
down throats
to be born with
a pit the potential

Elizabeth Schmuhl

Elizabeth Schmuhl is a multidisciplinary artist. She is the author of Presto Agitato (Dancing Girl Press & Zoo Cake Press, 2015) and Premonitions (Wayne State University Press, forthcoming). She also illustrates essays for The Rumpus.

Photograph by Christie MacLean

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