Two Poems
by NATALIE EILBERT

I. Book with Revenge Omitted


Or when he shoved my head down to the pillow and raised me up—

Like a clay mound I waited all summer for late summer for his mouth—

To drip on my back its blue and too early expression of his doubts—

About me I am a permanent gimp now what ruined me was the quake—

He so finely shook into my joints the quake that gave to the city—

Its unique ridges and smoke but I refuse to see the connections here—

Me I am a gregarious heap of trash I write poems about the I in states—

Of squalor and am injured but never quite my self self understand—

He stomped into my life a circus of crows dead from repeated tricks—

In the name of our man god Jesus stomped my body out sick of my pinions—

Wrote me his letter of redacts after nine letters I gleaned his dinner was good—

There was nothing I wanted more than his chest I would have let the lord—

Split him open to see his gaudy monster I would have drawn his skin on a feather—




II. I Listen to Your Radio Silence


Worse was his breathing in the other room, the rhythmic push and pull
of needing to be here. What woman doesn’t close a book and wander
the halls like a burning lullaby were clubbing her ears. I wake, I annul
the facts of us and make eyes at your figurine who stands for harsh winter,

our idiot grapplings. I get that I live mostly awake and fucked
in my bungled lyric art. Story of the woman who cloned her poor dead man
to clone herself to inhabit the world with their love. Your Eden splayed, amok
with the hands that made you to bury you tied to wet rocks, a European

asylum. When I take aim at your sky my mouth sits dull as a bivouac.
I listen to your blue death, the wind as it kicks the life out of rhododendron
leaves and leaves us cold. Mostly you don’t exist. As a human you lack
the dark biology of lying to the world. I’ll call you madonna, ugly tendon

ugly below and above these cities. You are so silent I think I’ll make you god
of architecture, the scaffolding a kind of worship, some kind of ablution
as the rain rains a question of holiness onto steel, asphalt, all the facades.
Enough with the talk of talk and talk already. Or imagine your wind a solution

to the man who continues his sleeping, the man I’ll call my other room.
What woman doesn’t pronounce herself chronologically, her language
a flagstone path from one end of the river to the other. The heavy balloon
of your body can’t haunt me. See I wrote this city, once for boredom, once for anguish.
NATALIE EILBERT's poems have appeared in or are forthcoming from Tin House, West Branch, Spinning Jenny, The Journal, Guernica, Colorado Review, Sixth Finch, Devil's Lake, and many others. She is a founding editor of The Atlas Review (www.theatlasreview.com).