Price of me is 40 licks, obesity, crawling with ticks — freight collision paranoia, virgin pants abandoned, a hymen, half/split, functions as a cape, red napkin, black heart, whichever one might sate. 40 sucks, 40 dicks, wearing the sore crown talking about how he never carried me ditch face tractor down came around things like me smell different, costs to play infection malarial, parasite ear colloquial buzzing; she been with him and him and everyone old. Old men. Fake leg woman. Gets wormed like the cat Mr. Ian. G stamp WIC card float by the redemption center bottles as her waist not all fat things drink beer but do too — so do meth not always skinny not always toothless blowjobs are not better that way, that’s why I said licks, that’s why I advertise licks, you fucking asshole.
The bed is not for shelling peas, nor husband fights nor knocking knees. The lay wants not for primrose lace between your legs nor on your face the spiderwebs of ancient mum’s tombed uteri plumbed contentious mild bounds upheaved stones bushwhacked, buzzed, down, till honey bees know not what’s left. This bed, this sunken living room, this craft table hulking our ridiculous womb was not for men’s needs, was just for birthing was just for death caused by all stringings of babe and soul and created desires, unrest. This bed is of a mother’s pain. It is of six-inch wooden splinters, God awfulness and impossibly hard to maintain, woven rattan fixed in centuries, divorce, miscarriage, preeclampsia, spouse cheating… teenagers inherit it and paint it green and purple with words like here I lie.… then die small deaths in it when the time comes to collect its pain. It’s mine, men… O, and it’s mine.
Elisabeth Horan is an imperfect creature from Vermont advocating for animals, children and those suffering alone and in pain – especially those ostracized by disability and mental illness. She has work up at Moonchild Magazine, TERSE. Journal, Blanket Sea, Former Cactus, Burning House and Milk & Beans. Her chapbook “Pensacola Girls”, written in collaboration with Kristin Garth, is forthcoming at Bone & Ink Press. Follow her @ehoranpoet & tumblr.com/blog/ehoranpoet