In my millionth incarnation
there are cinders in my voice
and wings on my back.
Mother, I was never a Goddess.
Why do you think that,
when my ghost still pole-dances
round your heart?
On some high mountain
of the waxing moon,
you will eat my blistered secrets
as my corpse bleeds blue,
you will gather cups and children
in the salt of your skin,
ancestral jewels in your belly,
amber waves of penance,
and four old dove hearts to tie around your neck.
Please will you resurrect my fingerbones
without a twinge of longing
for the hours they were twined around your own.
I really would like to
gnaw at my fingernails again.
I wish you would shine a bright light
into my blackened lungs, just for a laugh.
But maybe not – my buoyant shriek
would push right into your guilt,
the famished blade twisting greedily
on the second plunge.
Where is my head?
All I can see when they lift the sheet
are two smiling tonsils, fat with memories of giggle-smoke.
And a toe.
But the coroner’s report will no doubt reveal
I had a heart I never knew.