Marie Gauthier’s new poems can be read or are forthcoming in The Common, Cave Wall, Poetry Northwest, Crab Creek Review, and elsewhere. Her poem, “Where You Split, You Bloom,” first appeared in Volume 1, Issue 2 of burntdistrict.
WHERE YOU SPLIT, YOU BLOOM
–after Lia Purpura
By Marie Gauthier
Your stone’s a new milk tooth
among the weathered markers – how
to make of your loss something less
never, less always, less torn
sutures and sawtooth incisions?
Your appointments meant CBCs
and IV lines, the blue stars of radiation.
Mine are heartbeats. Sonograms.
The contrapuntal pulses of the living.
The phlebotomist’s smooth ruby draw
pains me beyond galaxies: the memory
of your cigarette paper skin
and elusive veins, how your face charred
to ash with each needle’s dig.
I press gauze to the red pearl
and sob. The bell
of my belly strains and shakes
with each strike of the ringer inside.