Picture a big book, like a dictionary, only not a dictionary, the kind with pages edged in pale toenails of gold,
& the big book is filled w/ paper birds praying for fire.
Through the window I see girls in their white-dart dresses & bare legs. I envy them. I want everything they have, their lightness, the tiny bones in their wrists. At first I thought
I was the book & then, the mind. I am somewhere between the wing & feather.
Picture the sorry meteor I make
when I make my way toward them, knowing safety is a lie, dragging the debris of my body,
all wing & weather, something in me eager for the burning, bearing my glass
parachute & my acre of rain.
Fish in a Bucket
You, deep in rough surf. It divides & creams the brown kite of your body. I cannot locate myself. Here you urge me forward & devout, I go. Men carrying buckets blue & brightly spilling fresh fish, their air drowned hearts, their silver muscle all one wish for water. I am not a fish. And I cannot stop stepping on the fish, my blind feet finning clumsy in the sugar- sand. The waterline’s hot blue rim a halo belting my hips. A red sprawl of lobster canvassing your fine hands. Something beautiful about the lung of want in your face. I am a crown, a cast hook, the unfinished ring needing itself. Fine. Barbed. Your come alive in me. For the love of God, I am not a bucket. Not a wish. Here is how I will remember it. Rum drunk. Dark braids of my hair undone.
A Good-Bye in 6 Parts
Here, for instance, is a long red skirt. I have strung it to my waist.
The fruits are hymns: orange, lemon, tangerine. Smudge pots. Almond stands.
I paid for everything.
Full sail & temple windows. The hive of bees & cock fights. Marmalade. Your tongue dredging me.
The cistern of my body tipping. Saltwater guttering the goat trail.
Climbing the clay embankment, I imagined that the semi truck drivers were not shouting sexual things to me.
The distant cruiseships at dawn, glittery & sad. In a way, it was like a treehouse, all luck & rope.
Beneath the dripping tree, I drank from a green bottle.
Hitchhiking: Pensaba que eras prostituta.
The soaked cherries of a bar tin.
Blue bowls of crushed tomatoes.
How you would pull my hair to the side to fuck me better.
I press blue hearts into the holes of my ears. There is delirium in our fucking, & lights in the trees.
-- Emily Vizzo has recently completed her MFA at Vermont College of Fine Arts and a summer residency at the Vermont Studio Center. Recently, she published work in FIELD, The North American Review, and the literary magazine Ellipsis. Emily Vizzo’s journalism work has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, Scripps Howard News Serviceand other national platforms. She is a National Writing Project fellow with the San Diego Area Writing Project and teaches yoga at the University of San Diego.