No home without the heart
of the woman, the quivering
keepsake of meat. Bury it beneath
the proudest pillars, house mother,
roof across her shoulders. Set her
feet in your kitchen, breath in your air-
well. Glass the windows with her watching,
learning to watch and be watched, watching
out for too many watchmen. How delightful/
frightful to be watched.
Paint over her past until
the monitors demand it stripped bare
in sacrifice. Sink in
the bathroom her voice, dripping
violet acoustics, hollow echo over
the slurry of all things flushed
with pride, shrieking shame.
No home without the shame
of the woman, passed down,
heirlooms of years long drowned. Without
her bones picked and puckered, peace
sucked out the marrow. Without her spine
ceiling cracking synovial, drumbeat rising
through the floor. No home without you folded
into foundation; only room
for the woman to grow walls again.
the riot, the bodhisattva
sans lotus or halo, hallowed feet tread
these bleeding streets. Not so lofty yet
to disremember human grievances,
bloody and splendid, swept up
in the swelling clamour
of raw hearts talking back
for the first time. Clad
in chrysanthemum yellow, ash
and rage, facing down
the architects of their suffering
with battered biscuit tins, raised
fingers, insistent in refusal
to submit. Hope blooming brilliant
from the muck. When they are crushed,
their soft and bloody faces
drip clean with mercy’s dew.
Some warm voice surrounds them:
It’s all right, you’re
not alone. Someone
heard you cry.
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