4 Poems by Alexis Pope
The matters of a beginning to revolution. Inside trees the unsure names. Of which I am chosen to be. A tumult beside a body of water, Atlantic-Pacific or the trial and error running my finger along the page. The reprieve forbidden except I become uncovered among the others. In their presence I am no longer a whole. Platefuls before the winter, what a joke blankets. No longer the homes beside each other, we then remove. Replace a mask to the person on your left. I am not without.
Below me what is lost. There were years of it. Then something curls into my breast. We flocked to the heat lamps. Lit the ends and walked home. Fog was a language but we never spoke. These moments move away from me. I know nothing unless sleep.
The set distance between each tree. We align or are sentenced to trim. In the youth of it I stood an above average height. As many as a few fingers. In order to properly. Which one contains the exact content warning. I’ve searched for it to come up. When I say empty I’m talking in sentiment. Regurgitate the absence of a nest. Do it again. Never learned how to identify the flora. People we used to be. The thick spaces between. Each year I thought if I put enough inside one would stick. The way a cow stands so still. My reflection in the window. Stitches of history expose themselves. What I have done in my birth.
If single mother don’t risk it. If single mother ignore sickness. I wrestle the beetles through night. Who did you grow up to be. 32 years of not knowing. I submit. The ones who turn me away. Blame in a mirror. The way it wrinkles. The blue under my eyes from labor I wouldn’t. But I’ve thought about it. To erase a past maybe. There’s a Disney movie where the girl is something. No one watches. My daughter walks into the room with a doll stuffed up her shirt. Mommy, I have a baby in my belly.
Alexis Pope is the author of That Which Comes After (Big Lucks Books, forthcoming) & Soft Threat (2014). Work has appeared or is forthcoming in Denver Quarterly, Poor Claudia, Powderkeg, Prelude, Spoke Too Soon, Verse Daily, and The Volta, among others. Pope lives in Chicago with her daughter & can be found here, here, & elsewhere depending on her mood.