They didn’t tell me where the funeral was so I know it’s everywhere,
spilling over edges with its overwhelming hunger while I brew tea
the Russian way my mother taught me because strength necessitates
dilution. There is always tea and there are always lemons; consistency
is a little gift. “Did you know gift is the German word for poison?”
speaks a voice flush with anecdotes like some bloodfed mosquito
high on insulin (or maybe nostalgia). “Beware the standing guest”
I say, or think, or whatever –– talking to yourself is a dish best served
cold, and anecdotes are a fish without a schoolmate, and I’m waiting
for my own blue lips because it’s me who was the goth all these years,
wasn’t it? Wasn’t I the one dropping the knife at the dinner table and
saying come and come and come until tears ran dirty streets through my
various eyeshadows: sad little tombstones for my superstitions, carrying
sense out to sea? Whatever. They didn’t tell me where the funeral was
so I filled a ripped bag with knives, left their sharp trail as breadcrumbs.
I’ll be waiting here for your ghost, or for a regeneration of myself
which will not recognize him.
Sonya Vatomsky is a Moscow-born, Seattle-raised ghost. They are the author of Salt is for Curing (Sator Press) & My Heart in Aspic (Porkbelly Press) and a poetry editor at Anthropoid. Find them by saying their name five times in front of a bathroom mirror or at sonyavatomsky.tumblr.com.
BMP Celebrates National Poetry Month
If “love calls us to the things of this world,” then poetry too can call us to think about challenging questions, difficult situations, and social justice, implicating and engaging the reader with the world we live in, in the hope that this engagement is a step toward wrestling with our better selves.