Della Watson and Jessica Wickens
April 25, 2009
This note is precision”
forgive me, i’ve neglected our vocabulary. the days’ little worries kept me from cackle
practice. pallor was a dinner. so now i owe you two and want to speak twice at once.
but i am a traditionalist. (much like green is the new march.)
–oh the tender massacre of winter.
[for example, in this warmth, i forget my eastern friends. i forget them always, by
keeping their names in my heart. and when my heart flies off, i use those names as
muscular substitution. see my face flushed? yes? i’m vein-full of ignored learnings,
amnesiatic embarrassments. it pumps me on, it beats me. how we cried that winter.]
how we built a christmas fire and _______________________________________.
now is a beach blanket. how my spindle crow’s feet sink in the sand.
it is time to grow old.
i am glad for this.
dear benjamin, my friend,
crow from here.
This note is precision
propped up in the rain
consider it the back break
of heaviest engineering
real decisions grow tall
we noticed this one
consider this the tough
times, in sister cities
folks really using their chairs
to the music
exhaling around you
this hibernation is natural, of course.
of course, snow no longer applies so
are we banned from the word?
it still exists, and people wear sweaters, little ribbons,
an image of ice on the calendar.
why can’t we, too, sleep?
it rains. that much we know. and long nights.
of course, i’m talking circles around it–
i have been consumed, actually.
i speak from a belly. the beast allows
my tiny voice to flee in burps and coughs.
how long? i am punching the stomach,
but i doubt escape without some change.
i see an organ that mirrors the sun, rising,
the stockholm syndrome setting in.
The sight of my own
flesh startles me
an unseasonable frost but
it clears the air
of wheat, and why winter
we slide back and forth
dancing in a smaller realm
the doctors sniffing
around us like dogs
Benjamin, here I explain the charges
and the pain of
my child whose parents spread like the wind
(banded, flight recorded)
is the time to build–
to ready the forks for unwelcome eyes,
to cut the riff raff with a chisel
i’m swallowing your orders
with hope of health–
for muscular development,
i will avoid
the dream plan attained –revisited resolution
the clenched hands –misplaced holding
the band that won’t march –stationary motion
but i’ll be sunk/tied as long as
i can’t cut the string from my foot.
oh help me
i’ll never leave her
Jessica Wickens’ poems have appeared in Little Red Leaves, Eleven Eleven, Floating Holiday, The Whirligig, Spell, Switchback, and Blink. She studied anthropology at the University of Chicago and creative writing at California College of the Arts. She co-edits the literary journal Monday Night, recently founded Skeptic Press and sits on the board of Small Press Traffic. A native of Michigan, she currently works at a legal services center and lives in Oakland with human and feline companions.
Della and Jessica are currently working on collaborative a poetry collection.