5 0 5


I am alone in my skin. 
He took his hedgeclippers 
shore the roots growing between 
my toes and the dirt in half, 
and left me; cut from my Mother, 
I am wandering whisperings in the
sunset wind. My tongue and teeth have
sealed themselves between the 
river of my lips - my hips
grew patches of flowerbeds.
But the roses died
and left behind a tangle of
dusty thorns.

Is this your throne,
lover? Are you crowned
by the weight of the universe
on your blonde brow?

My collarbones bend and stoop
to carry new ashes that fall from my
eyes. My neck rises out, 
not a phoenix, but a mushroom cloud. 
I hope you’re proud of the 
graveyards your thumbs knit 
into my wrists and cheeks and hair.


The botanical/natural imagery in the first stanza is lush. I personally enjoy the anthropomorphism of trees and water, etc.  I like the short transitional second stanza addressing a second person.  That's a nice technique.  The third stanza kind of lost me with the mixture of images.  I think it could use some work (and personally I am exhausted by the use of the word "collarbones" in poetry, but that's just a personal bias.  Use whatever word fits for you, of course!).  I love the way you use language.  I wonder if a poem like this speaks as well to anyone who has not loved a man romantically.  The notion of being ripped from the closeness of family/Mother and wandering through wilds, ambling back to cultivated roses and questioning the authority of the "throne" really speaks to me as a woman who has been in relationships with certain kinds of men who wish to dominate.  Though I say the third stanza needs work, I think it does portray a feeling of despair and frustration that I think you were going for.  This theme is nothing new, but I think you've done some interesting things with it.