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So I Locked Myself Inside a Star for Twenty Years
© by Jeremy Radin

Touch was absolutely

out of the question. I couldn’t stop sweating. My heart, a butterfly pinned to a glacier. Empires fell inside my mouth. I touched myself like a pogrom & broke my sex into a history of inconsequential shames. I wept viciously inside of my own stomach & had it condemned. From an upside-down bell I drank silence, subsisted on the memory of someone else’s hands. Wolves sang & I did not answer. I forgot their names. Mornings were the worst, then there were days & evenings. Streetlights & darkened sycamore & suburban grief so full it made me foolish. I shattered my fist on the Lord’s jaw. Sorrow sat, licking my wrists & my neck. I slept at its convenience. O, uncelebrated body. My penis, a lighthouse on the bottom of the ocean, shining shadows
at the undersides of boats. Nobody drowned for so many years. Desperate for the making of those candy-throated ghosts, I found the rooms between the violence of comets. I threw myself into anything’s path. Even the sky bent around me. How lonely to be something that nothing wants to kill.

Poem submitted by Mad Conley

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