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autobiographia literaria 

i wrote on only the first page of notebooks
then crumpled the inky sheet 
to stuff tangled letters into my mouth.
swallowed & laid on my back.
i looked up so hard i bore a hole
through the ceiling of my childhood bedroom.
watched the clouds go zoological. 
my teachers made paper airplanes
of my stories & sent them out the window.
in the school yard i took stick to dirt
& wrote my name over & other
just to cross it out. 
one line through the middle.
i lead seances in the "handicapped" stall 
of the elementary school bathroom.
made sigils on stickie notes.
pretended to be smoking as i breathed
out the sharp january cold. 
sharpie hearts & stars drawn
on the back of each hand. i wanted
to feel perminant. found a dead bird 
under the boy's tree & held 
a little funeral complete 
with dandelions. when i stared
at chapter books the language
turned to escalators-- each letter
sliding across the next. 
bought dollar store peanuts
to feed to park squirels
each of which i named & had
a back story for. louis left
the circus. eleanor used to be
a cobbler before she was tranformed
by a witch. watched the squirels 
crawl back into their hollows
worshipped salt & microwaves. 
licked my fingers & spoons
& plates. walked out in the yard
at night & kept secrets between
me & the moon. got obsessed 
with constellations & then wept 
when i couldn't find them.
if anyone called for me in that dark 
i would hide & say, 
"i am no one at all." 
burried my poems at the foot 
of the yard's big evergreen tree
next to goldfish graves & spare stone.
kissed them goodnight 
& promised to return in the morning
with new adjectives 
& ways to say "blue." 

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