Devon Balwit | We are Procession, Seismograph

Devon Balwit

Excerpts from We are Procession, Seismograph


The world spins me, tucked into its spokes,
thoughts a gymnast’s ribbon flaring, altered
by degrees, wheeling through sun and
shadow. I stretch, twist, pull tight, the
maypole center of vast forces. Journeying, I
am herm, wherever I stand, center. The light
about me breaks color. I gather shards, pocket
palettes. I toss fracture this way and that,
sowing the jagged.

Zeno’s Paradox

The fists, for now, find me. Trick is to let the
pain explode outward, concussion’s cloud
cloaking ache. Time and again, scar-sutured,
I reassemble. Dread regrows, but I tie it back,
like hair. I refuse to believe the cat
unfriendly, lower myself, dogged, to its
claws. One day the blow won’t fall, between
it and me an infinity of half-ways.

Down There

The wind gusts my skirt. Panicky, I slap it
down, fretting, no panties, no panties,
remembering sitting spread-kneed on
bleachers, a Girl Scout leader barking, shut
your legs! as indignant as if I’d left a burner
on, a faucet running. The cool current teases
like skinny dipping, water slipping
everywhere, the surprise as luscious as being
five and masturbating, squeezing, squeezing,
thinking I could do this forever.

From the Trenches

The cold sings to us over the throb of our
wounds, a melody difficult to resist. It slips
its hands beneath our clothes and caresses.
We can feel ourselves harden although we
wish it were otherwise. Even our tears freeze,
stalactites of grief. Our last letters crinkle
against us as we writhe, whispering, as at our
funeral. We want to scratch some mark into
the stones beneath our cheek, our final resting
place, but we have nothing but our nails,
fungal and soft. We only bleed. Already, the
hungry ground swallows us up. We shout
mother, mother in a vast fugue, voices all
around. This is the best we can do, this
composition of gore.

Copyright © 2017 Devon Balwit

ISBN 978-0-9993971-4-5

All rights reserved. This book or any portion thereof may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever without the express written permission of the publisher except for the use of brief quotations in a book review or scholarly journal.

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