Séance with Lavender & Bleach
this is an undressing : body dissolving : like a pill
on the swollen tongue : beached & blood heavy : whale
suffocating on the gravity : of its own chest
mix this powder into paste : mud thick scent that burns
chlorine turning : ghost dance on the breeze : sting
that crawls : dirty fingers down the back of throat
coat your hair in this paste : & how you phantom
a part of you : slow burn body : into belonging
skin peeling back : like abandoned layers of glue
mama, i am trying to give your
son a proper burial, but you are
dredging him up, swollen & blue
from the river of your throat.
& how lucky we are, that my
name has not curled, wounded
animal in my throat. clog of
gray-brown blood & matted
hair guttered into shower drain.
this [crippled/queer] body is
a collection of disappointments.
wrong answers. body named
boy/girl/ghost. in the winter i run
the water & the pipes scream
louder than i am willing to, drown
out my voice & i become the
sound of summer rain.
strip the bleach from your hair : acid rain : drenched skin
drown the scent : in lavender & orchid pulp : stain
everything : the color of blood : before it abandons you
i run a razor across my thigh : soft rain cracking
against tiles : split the pale blue : tributaries of skin
nick my knee : watch the red gather & drip
watch myself pool : in the bottom of the shower : thin ribbon
of red winding : cigarette smoke in a still room : momentary
afterimage : of emergency flares : before it slips away into the sea
By torrin a. greathouse
torrin a. greathouse is a genderqueer, schizophrenic, cripple-punk from Southern California. They are the Editor and Co-Founder of Black Napkin Press. Their work has been published or is forthcoming in 3Elements Review, Assaracus, Heavy Feather Review, FreezeRay Poetry, Glass: A Journal of Poetry, Polychrome Ink, Rabbit Catastrophe Review, The Thought Erotic, Emerge Literary Journal, & The Feminist Wire. torrin’s work was nominated for the Pushcart Prize by Rust + Moth. When they are not writing or editing poetry, they are trying to survive in america long enough to earn a degree.