Today's poem is by Mihaela Moscaliuc


Noica says somewhere the only fruit that never ripens is man.
The story of a life's perpetual green is the story of averted eyes.
If I served you that story now, crushed in salvia or paprika,
you would scrape it into the compost bin and wrap your palms
around my warm skull. Your poor palms. Your poor chords,
trying to console me as I extol each warden I bribed to save my life.
Once I knelt, smiled, kissed the hand of the despot.
More than once I slit my lip to pacify two tongues lusting for blood.
Once I shaved my head to help someone abhor me.
He thought me depressed, wove me a wig of algae.
When a catapulted body exploded at my feet,
I lifted the sugar cone as high as it went above my head
and scored with my throat twenty drips of ice cream.
Once I let my mother go, and she went, for a year.
She returned with a fractured face, a patch of pink linoleum.
More than once I confessed a lie to protect more lies and once,
bent over the industrial river below the Nicolina Bridge,
I saw a scabby fish stop dead as he navigated my face.
It lulled a second then sank, all but one eye.
I opened my mouth to the sun to soak up the heat,
keep what I'd seen out.

Copyright © 2014 Mihaela Moscaliuc All rights reserved
from Immigrant Model
University of Pittsburgh Press
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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