The vertebrae in my knotty spine are linking and singing knees knocking old bones
creaking I’m walking upright to reach the husks in a corn maze I crawl out walk
then like lightning I run there’s a river to cross where I bathe make eyes at the moon
& plead o deliver me from the repetition of conformity & the conformity
of repetition I have a vision I’m lighting bonfires smoke under my nails in black
country air I’m waltzing in a meadow sinning by omitting the most important
details of my life storing secrets in bouquets of Queen Anne’s lace hiding
my feelings in silver bottles that shatter on a shelf I don’t recognize myself
in the mirror I’m always older or younger than the reflection I find a pitchfork
& copper cow bell when the bell rings my shins snap my back breaks under
the weight of hoofs & heartaches as a rooster crows the coming of the dawn.
Editor’s note: the poem is intended to read as a long-lined single stanza with particular care for the end lines. On a phone, the poem is best viewed in landscape.
Susan Michele Coronel is a New York City-based poet. She has a B.A. in English from Indiana University-Bloomington and an M.S. Ed. in Applied Linguistics from Queens College (City University of New York). She has had poems published in journals including Prometheus Dreaming, Passengers Journal, Newtown Literary, The Ekphrastic Review, California Quarterly, and Street Cake.