by Francesca Wilkin
I like the in-between seasons,
the slowly-freezing-slowly-thawing seasons,
the kiss of autumn or the sex of spring –
fingers going numb in bedrooms, greasy hair,
the broken-down shank of a pointe shoe.
Empty crossroads and amber leaves
collecting around my ankles
feel like winter’s touch –
curly hair mornings, chapped lips,
leg warmers in a pale blue studio.
He hands me his plaid sweatshirt and
I wear it to bed,
digging myself a burrow under the blanket –
hands hiding secrets, do not disturb,
I tie my ribbons wrong & I don’t notice.
Slowly descending into dark days and
shadows flirt beneath my eyelids –
crumbling stones, poison marrow,
I fall off the box during adagio and do not cry.
I cut open my abdomen and pull out my guts,
the toxins inside of me
are crudely removed –
frayed nooses, empty promises,
my dance bag hangs off my chair to dry.