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FRANCINE J. HARRIS

Tatterdemalion


I am sad when I hear the first cupped moan of a woman. It is usually from behind a wall. It is usually in the quiet. It is usually not dark enough. It is as if it were resisting light. As if a rhizome, first coming through the soil. If you needed this space, I wish I could plant it. I wish I could cook it. The light is everywhere. I love our small. I love the grasses I donít want to weed. I like the nettle. I like the foxtail and the dandelion and the cocklebur. I know this is rampant. I know roots getting thick. I love the first cupped thistle in morning. I love the tangle violet. It grows anywhere. Why is this a bad thing. I know where the throat needs sun. I know it must stay young. I wish everything. Maybe I love you small. I love the wild carrot that eats bull thistle. Maybe I am pigweed growing a trunk. Grown overnight. What parts of me shake loose dirt. What parts wait until you are bare. My jejune bluegrass, why do I eat your light. There are grasses growing up the shabby fence. All of them fluid blade. We sway. Creep easily. What parts of me are wild. What parts storing up for the choke. How do I tell the difference.






francine j. harris is a Cave Canem fellow and has work appearing or forthcoming in McSweeney's "Poets Picking Poets", Ninth Letter, The Drunken Boat, Ploughshares and in the recent anthology, To Be Left With the Body. She is Writer-in-Residence at a local high school in her hometown Detroit.



Boxcar Poetry Review - ISSN 1931-1761