Body a fragile thing
burgeoned by words
becomes a weapon
hacking and shivering
throat swallowing stomach
responds— mucus and bile and membrane.
My body both house and tombstone
lies awaiting the wolf
bared teeth and all claws
skin a tent drawn tight rips and flutters
the flapping is Morse code, and
I cannot be more than prey.
Words are silent now
body an echo of nothing
tongue a red carpet
curled precariously on teeth expanding—
This body was always a fragile thing.
Gervanna Stephens is a Jamaican poet and proud Slytherin with congenital amputation living in Canada. Her work has appeared/forthcoming in Empty Mirror, The /tƐmz/, Bone & Ink, TERSE, & WusGood.black,. She hates public speaking, has two sisters who are better writers than her & thinks unicorns laugh when we say they aren’t real. Twitter: @gravitystephens
Image: Filipe Faísca by Laura Veronesi (Creative Commons)