i go by myself
into the blinking archways of bone.
eat cotton candy from a skull.
the dead are not dead
just entertaining the living.
i woke up with tickets
in my mouth. taste of sugar
on my my my tongue.
music poured from every knee cap.
am i living? i put on
my funeral dress.
at the carnival off the highway
everything tastes like metal.
i remember you asking
for a parasol & me saying,
"but it is raining" then, you saying,
"no--it's not." the earth coming
in onion orbits. the sun in your eyes.
i find rusted bolts in my pocket.
there are too many boyfriends to count
& they all want to win me
a giant stuffed bear. the bear
is stuffed with wads of hair.
the boyfriends are older than me.
they tell me i am always
wanting too much. my body is
a place where balloon darts land.
the ferris wheel in the quarry.
a plane crashes & the scrap
is used for a rollercoaster.
holding on for dear
life. what i have done to hold on
for dear life. pulling hair out
one strand at a time.
the swing ride. kitchen implements
i've used for digging.
beater. bowl. wooden spoon.
paper plates to sleep on.
the workers put their skeletons away
in clarinet cases. one more thing.
a machine for screaming.
i go inside. someone asks,
"who died?" i remember
the funeral clothes & i take them off.
i answer, "i am just living prepared."
i want someone to teach me
how to celebrate. don't be brief.
don't come to town like the carnival does.
night after night, then
frantically reburying itself.
tombstones where it was.
come to me enduring. a set of kitchen knives.
a disco ball. hold me down
while i try to run into traffic.
the cars running naked
on the highway. fill my mouth
with tickets that do not correspond
to anything at all.