Sunday, February 12, 2006

[my heavy eyelids shut the light out]

my heavy eyelids shut the light out
and the weight of my mind rests on your chest.
we turn in the night for a secret warmth
hidden under the blanket your mother gave you
when you were only two years old.
i filter your words through the echo
of your heartbeat inside the cavity of my ear;
i think i hear you say it tickles. so i try
only for a bloody nose when your knee finds me
hidden inside your t-shirt. it used to be white.
the tantrum of children in adult bodies,
half naked and covered in my blood.
i'm laughing at your attempts at medicine
with a box of tissues and a cupped palm.
"pinch my nose, up here" and you pinch
too gently at first, afraid to break me.
the cushions of your finger and thumb
lull me into a cradle, my ear pressed
against your bare chest and you hold me,
my eyes shutting closed again and we sleep.

there's no title because the only thing i could think to call it was "a bloody nose" which is a terrible title.


Brian Boutwell said...

Katy, I like it. We've talked. It's funny but IM's really hurt the blog comments at times.



an easy red one.

katy said...

blog comments... ego-boosters. but so are our conversations. i don't need the rest of the world to know how popular i am ;)

arch.memory said...

Katy, isn't this a reworking of an older poem by you? If so, could you please redirect me to the original?

katy said...

no this isn't a reworking. i sent you this poem before via email a little while back and since then i haven't touched it. oh, the working title was 'bloody nose'.

arch.memory said...

Ah yes, of course! (See how senile I'm getting? And I'm not even thirty!) And here is what I had to say (still very valid, except it seems "Bloody Nose" is how I'll remember it!):

Katy, katy, katy... This is becoming my signature starting when I am all out of words. Which these days seems like every time I read a poem by you. I am not sure if that's because I am extra sensitive because I have been dry and depressed, or if it's because you've gotten--against all odds--better and better. In any case, I guess my point is, you took my breath away, one more time. And I do have to say that this poem especially reminds me of Marie Howe's writing, that fluid delicacy in the words, that effortless flow, like the words were there all along and you just uncovered them. There is that breakability, that I am such a sucker for, and that I think it takes such guts to expose, and that I have to say women tend to be better at. [As for] the title, I would tell you, why do you need a title? But then my brother in my head would yell at me, like when I write him an e-mail with a bland subject, or even just an "re:" (he obviously thinks the title is very important). But I understand what you mean, that "a name wouldn't be good enough no matter what that name might be" (it's definitely that, rather than "it isn't worth naming"). And I can understand that you wouldn't want to name it "Bloody Nose"; in such instances, I always think that an understatement is the safest bet: "in the night"? By the way, here are my favorite lines: "the tantrum of children in adult bodies," and "you pinch / too gently at first, afraid to break me."