Human Writes: Chelsea Stockholm

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Grenfell Watch me.

Through the crowd I stand tall

though my spine 

has been crumpled, folded and unfolded

by fumbling, lazy fingers,

my skin may be peeling

and shedding

but people still call me

home

these people sleep between my ribs

tuck dreams under tissue

and tired responsibilities

right next to my heart

Watch.

Every beat is the crack

of concrete under cautious feet

or the rattling of walls

from loud mouths

and music and meaning

every beat pumps stories

through otherwise hollow veins

these arteries are clogged with secrete -  

it’s all tinder.

And when you insulate lungs

with lies and loose change

I am bound to go up 

in flames

watch me burn.

Watch as I disintegrate and dust

covers up the last reminders - 

these broken gravestones.

I keep epitaphs under my tongues

because one day someone

will be allowed to listen.

 

 

The Origin of Beasts

And the men who seed the children

were creatures of the night

we were ravaged and reckless

playing with lives like they were matches

we had discovered fire

for the first time

The wild was a forgotten swing

and our language

our language was a drum. 

 

 

Trade

This is not the slaughterhouse.

You’ve been there already

strung up belly up

bones cracked

so you can be pre-placed

the knife knows your neck

                                             already

knows how to kiss

just the right way

to make you.

This is the market,

this is where they grab your body

like it was bred for them

where your price

is always one that can be paid. 

 

 

Kathleen

Your houses

had always been transient gateways

for ghosts whose spirits

last as long as the structure

abandoning the sentinel for an open space

of choruses and community

we fitted ourselves into the mosaic

at the lip of the music

Kathleen called

and we came dancing.

Rain fell hollow

demanding

and even though it soaked through

those lost-boy vintage clothes

they became a second skin

the fragments of our voices echoed

carving their way to the clouds

On the walk back home

you held my hand

every string that I had ever served

knotted around our fingers

capable of creaming harmonies

once again.