this is just an exact replica of our house on noble street
here are the geese
& their lake we cannot find. here
the generator & here the winter storm.
we dress in our separate cisterns
& decide it is too late to go to mass.
god is a pile of leaves &
there is a dragon we name after
a dead sister. pots & pans
the size of thumbs. when i set out
to make this replica i wanted
a place to play out my childhood.
try to remember how i would talk
to bruises. name them like new continents.
pictured myself living on the purple dirt.
from across the room the house
is average as any. i tell myself
"that is a normal childhood."
lights flash gold & green behind curtains.
in the yard a sink hole eats
the old swingset. no one is
big enough for the kitchen table.
saying grace. my dollhouse brother.
someone is sewing in the crawlspace.
it is me. he is making a quilt
of all the nights he tries
to fit together. laying open
on the roof like a piece of red meat.
the alarm clock becoming
a nurture sound. here is what you must do
to bring the next year.
rituals for dinner. the flash light
i used to keep my bedroom door's mouth
clear of bodies. a portrait of a saint.
her hands folded in her lap.
she's praying to no longer be
my namesake. i tell her "this is
just a model house." she says & leaves.
i put the structure to sleep.
a blanket over everything. this is what
i wanted for so many year
of my life. a kind of swaddled dark.
no you don't have to anymore.
i hold a spoonful of light
& save it to feed the moon.
sweet & chalky. the sun carries
an army of bare feet. there was
so much love. there was a bed of nails.
there was a dirt basement
where only my ribs could sleep.