Carly Joy Miller
I leave, mistake a bird’s broken
leg for twig hidden in
the curt cloud-shadows
of sun. The berries in my hand
may save or silence me. In my silence
I strip my clothes like the world is my house.
The sky, my dark ceiling. Moss, lush carpet, body
the dry earth, and all
doorhinges and rusted circuits
stain and spread a copper sheen.
Let the record show I was kind with the pick-axe hovered low by my thigh
I begged the officer
to let me tango in churches
as an act of confession.
He didn’t stand long. I bleached his chambray shirt
to construct a proper signal
for surrender. That doesn’t mean
I didn’t spit. I begged him to drown me in the river
and be fished out nameless—
faux baptism for the girl
who quit rage. The war against the body
is over. Now I want to thrust my hands
into the earth—press my wildness low.
Over the holidays, I participated in a white elephant and received a bottle of beer and a short beer glass with Rasputin's face. I used to be terrified of Rasputin because I shrieked when he popped up with glowing green eyes during a video I was watching in eighth grade. Now I look at the glass fondly and I see it now: he does have a way about himself.
Carly Joy Miller is the assistant managing editor for the Los Angeles Review, a contributing editor for Poetry International, and a founding editor of Locked Horn Press. She is also the co-curator of the reading series, The Brewyard. Recently nominated for a Pushcart, her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Third Coast, Linebreak, Vinyl, Tupelo Quarterly, and elsewhere.