The darkness within the human body is the darkness within
            the green violin – broken catgut strings slap against the hollow
                        wood & a jazzed-up sound ensues. Because the body is more
tenacious, even when what you love is taken
            from it, like an assassin’s incidental target: you give it mouth-to-mouth
                        underwater, fail, then shove it from your mooring
like a common sailboat. & off you go to another place, your memories
            bloody as Ginger Roger’s feet, yet cradled with the premise of
                        timelessness, as the oceanic night imbues the town clock;
the premise of hour hands broken. The sight of a tree felled in Brooklyn
            is an iron wing cutting to the bone of your grief, in autumn
                        a blousing of oranges, yellows, love letters & lore.
That hallway indeed is my house, the doors removed by strangers
            while I was contained in a realm of forgetting
                        the import of door, window, floor: a domestic war that is finally
obsolete, they say & my fingers snap like a flapper’s in a jazz club,
            the cadence of hope, fear, hope. Still, in Abu Ghraib, when they
                        attached the wires to Gilligan’s wrists, told him for minutes
on end that should he move he’d die…Didn’t death actually occur, literal death,
            somewhere within his chemical brain? Indeed, how many times
                        do the sorrowful take their own life, before crossing
the actual river? Once I fell asleep beside a woman, nothing actually
            happened (for me) – not even a kiss on the forehead – but you would think it
                        an event, the next morning, the way she swayed
along the rooftop edge, tossing crushed cigarettes into the pretend
            Pacific waves. My blood as I speak is turning to light, yet I want
                        fear, the anchor of it; I want to know
                                    that I am
real, like a century-old sea turtle
            domed with a painted shell
                        wrapping itself around the entire world


Carolyn Srygley-Moore: is an award-winning graduate of the Johns Hopkins University's Writing Seminars, in Baltimore, a Pushcart nominee; her digital chapbook Enough Light on the Dogwood is available at Mimesis. Her work has appeared in a number of journals to include Antioch Review, The Pennsylvania Review, Mimesis, Eclectica, & the anitwar anthology Cost of Freedom. She lives in Upstate New York with her husband & daughter.


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