Bewitchment for Dummies: A guide

One, two, twenty-one, thirty,

thirty-seven, forty-four.

Count the concentric circles

on your lover’s chest.

Their steady breathing will set

the pace for your fingertips.

Sternum, heartbeat,

collarbone, breath, trace

from one to the other and listen

to the stories they tell you.

Notice where their skin dips,

where their muscle tightens,

how every crease radiates from

their soul. Here is where

you will fall in love,

by their side at 3 a.m.

as you read the Braille

on their skin. Close

your eyes to the streetlight

through the window

and you will see.


how fungi grow

We did mushrooms together

that one time. You danced naked

to Hozier in the kitchen

while light filtered

from the open fridge.

Time stood still

as we listened to everything

from Katy Perry to Phantom

of the Opera, floating

on my scratchy cotton sheets,

just to see how they

made us feel.

I told you things I hadn’t

even heard myself and you held

my hand anyway.

Your eyes were the happiest

I’d ever seen them

when we lay in my backyard

under the misty sky.

And we fell in love

with the way the rain

wouldn’t stop falling.

anatomy I

I broke your hands
open, and all I found were bones
where you said I would see
gold. Carpals, metacarpals,
but certainly no Midas joint
where your veins intersect
with your tendency to think
too highly of your sweating
palms. The palms that touched
my face once, twice, three times
too hard for any fake diamond
skull to bear. But I think
I only wanted you more, even
knowing all I’d find was marrow
where precious little
metal should be.

Attn: The husband I married too young


I bought this postcard because it reminded me

of you. The way you floated, struggling,

into my heart. The way you still cling,

frenzied (as much as you can be), to my arms

when I lay next to you in bed at night.


I bought this postcard because it reminded me

of the first time we fucked. Had sex. Made love.

Because I did love you underneath

the branches of the trees in a city

park. We floated on waves of the grass.


I bought this postcard because it reminded me

of me. The way I was caught

between a sea of grass where you lay, familiar,

and the dark, unknown limbs

above my head.


I wrote this postcard because I couldn’t

remember the last time I wanted to make

love. Have sex. Fuck

our life with one too many picket fences

built before I knew the suburbs


weren’t for me. I couldn’t send this postcard

because I knew you would understand.

Botany 101 (or divorce for children)

How do you explain
to a 6-year-old,
(whose tiny hands brought you
a mug of lukewarm tea
when you were sick, whose
dark eyes know only love
in its purest form)  

that you were just a bible-born
sprout who didn’t know any way
but down the aisle

that growing up can
mean growing root-bound
in our small terra-cotta pots

that sometimes grownups break
each other’s terra-cotta hearts
but mostly we’ll break hers

that shattering the one thing
holding us together is the only way
to fully bloom

that sometimes love
is the only thing tangling your roots
together, matted and slowly starving.

13 ways of looking at her hand

After Wallace Stevens. But better.



If her palms could tell the future

I would hold her

hand like a crystal ball.



Her hand lives in infamy

where myths grown on languid trees

are harvested and mulled

into wine for the common people.



Dew from heaven fell

from between her legs,

before her hand held

the new breath of joy

and fear.



An eye in the middle of her hand

looked god in the face

and said no.



A cross tattoo on the middle finger

of her hand.



“How did you learn to dance?”

I sang with devils and Olympus

where Athena taught me to

sway like a warrior to the music

of her hand.



Lovers held her hand

sitting on a park bench

but before the sun set

she had to learn

to hold her own.



I sleep with one arm

over my eyes

and a star beneath my pillow.

Her hand sleeps

clenched around

my lungs.



He said her hand

was a pipe dream.

But it was actually

a nightmare.



Her hand

flies with tigers

and moonbeams.



27 bones

17 muscles

5 fingers

in her immeasurable




If scars tell stories

her hand

is a minstrel.



The current is swift,

her hands must be strong

to swim with the fish.

i fell

i fell like summer dusk does

with so much in between 

the sun’s eyes and moon’s lips

both so bright, separated

by the time i watched you 

behind a cup of coffee

or when i drank your crisp mojito

because you were driving

somewhere, i don’t know

i don’t think i’ll ever return.


i fell like summer dusk does

your sunfire hair floating 

my sky as it turned

orange, purple, blue 

ocean-black. i went 

wandering or wondering 

not even a holy light

to guide me before

i realized your eyes were fireflies

your fingers moonbeams

dancing gently across my arms.


i fell like summer dusk does

looking up to find 
my lungs tangled

in the branches

with owls 
as playmates

and mosquitos 

silently at their resolve,

i looked down to find

your hand carrying mine 

like it had been there

since before the trees.


i fell like summer dusk does

realizing i’d never seen

this brush-stroke sky before.

i know why god said

it is good.