Rigor Mortis

I once gave my body a roadkill burial.
It had become tiresome and heavy, a container spilling
onto the sidewalk and consequentially
being whisked away by the sewer drains.

So I dragged it to the side of the highway
and left it there for years, to the rain collecting
in its open mouth. When I returned,

it bucked in any harness I tried to fasten it in.
It wouldn’t allow for its echoed hunger to be reduced
to digestion. It had fallen in love
with the caves beneath our feet, hollowing themselves out
until they are emptiness, unrolled for no one to see.

My body was once small and I loved it better then,
before I knew bodies unfold and pucker along their seams.
Before I was an echo of women with loud voices
from practiced diaphragms. Bodies that blow cold fronts
into each room they enter. I never asked to be a force of nature.

Under the blue haloed light of an aquarium,
I pressed my nose against the glass, until
it was no longer on the glass and it was no longer a nose,
my face losing its hard corners, my limbs boneless and

full of electricity. A jellyfish whose love wraps their lovers’
skin in blisters. Whose love swallows the almost-born,
as if tucking the soon to be krill away from a short and terrified life.

In the parking lot of an appliance store, I hung my head
close to someone else’s, still as the moon in the rearview mirror.
I don’t look them in the eyes, but I could feel something shifting

deep beneath the worms, not a cave but a
spring boiling itself back into the world.
I lay and want rose in the back of my throat,
spitting through my teeth when I tried to speak.