Mine wasn’t general, in fact I came out
a rotten plum. I’d suffocated in the womb.
My first two days were spent in an oxygen box.
If I close my eyes I create memory
of the tiny hiss of oxygen,
of my skin turning purple,
to blue, to pink, like morning. The thing I like to say
is that I came out dead, but that’s not really
the truth. Did I come out dishonest?
I imagined I should tell you this story, darling,
so I’m writing you this postcard. I stole it
from a gift shop like a bowerbird
on a mission. I guess I should feel
something about that. I don’t. Lying again.
Stealing again. I’m not sure what’s the fib.
Sorry for always doing things I don’t
want to. I say this in French, or the first
word in French, which is a lot like you
teaching me how to love in another
language. We were in a city I don’t remember
this city being. Do you remember?
There’s hardly room to fit this all on the card.
I will keep it brief. Yesterday I was a bad kid.
A man on 4th street stared at me
And mouthed who’s this guy?
He delivers line this and tosses an empty can.
And I think yeah who is he as I trip.
I walk around in this body, feeling
like a still-live animal, that everyone
is trying to taxidermy.
I am a boy. You told me so. I couldn’t keep my eyes closed,
and your mouth wouldn’t stop so you wanted
to take it all back. You had a tarot card
that told you to practice patience so you tried.
The room was a pharmacy of sweaty bodies.
It was July, it was the holiday. I couldn’t
believe you wanted me here on your shoulders.
I thought anyone here could have a mouth.
So take it back, I have this delivery
for you. I always overpay the postage.
I don’t remember where to sign it.
Sign me again. Like you did before
with the indelible marker. For days
I watched the eddy of black wash
down the drain. I thought you were coming
over. I thought you were staying longer.
I thought I would yawn again. Please,
I have a ballpoint and inky fingers.
Be warm-blooded, be wet-tongued,
be the one who sleeps outside the post office for me.