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Wyvern Lit

Four Poems

Poetry by lauren elma frament


WHITE PARK, 2:57 PM    (WINTER 2007)

standing in the woods at the park

            i cannot conjure anyone's face                        but his

(& isn't that                 just /

                        the saddest joke?)


the only time i saw him hit                 someone

who was not me,         i caught hysteria

            mob fever / & helpless relief


                        the kind           of shame

                        that swallows

                        without chewing


                                    we, thirty-some circling

            vultures,          kettled


            around the two boys / no more

                        than fifteen /                & in the middle

of winter                     with christmas coming


            i held his backpack the way,


            years later,                  someone would hold

                                                my hair


                        it was cold                   us standing there

                                    watching what we thought

            would be a fight          to the death


watching boys                         be boys

                        & cheering /                 a tradition


            i grew into (practiced despite)



            tiny holly berries


                                    the snow




maybe if i had stayed              there

i would have said                    something /



& i could have walked home

            or ran away                 from it


maybe if i hadn't seen

            the tooth pop out

                        of his mouth /              have you ever plucked off

                                                            a dandelion head

                                                            with your fingers?


if the snow      didn't look

            like a poor excuse

                        for light


if he hadn't practiced

            on my blank canvas

                        of a face


if i hadn't taken

            a pregnancy test

                        the week before


if i hadn't slid

            into the driver's seat

                        of the Beamer

            if i hadn't had to learn


how to make a clean                break

                        (the only time i ever drove stick

            was running from the cops

                        & i didn't stall once)




 & the boy who hits you lives on a street

            with the same name as your mother


which teaches you everything

            you need to know


about silence / & time doesn't give a shit

            about anything but itself


& so it leaves you there

            in a bedroom in a stained apartment


staring at the speckled ceiling

            waiting for the end


for anything



& asking          why?    why have you forsaken me?

            when you don't even believe


in god




he, a deceit of vultures

            kettling with fist & mine

& i will not get out for good today

            & the cop who will be

in my parents' living room tonight

            is an old owl of a man

who knows me too well

            & so my mouth will be

an empty wooden room, i will say

            nothing at all

& there will be no blackbird

            trilling thorns

from my throat, no great potoo

            wailing into this too big night

there will just be me

            & this birdhouse built

for silence

            there will be a shower drain

catching feathers as if a sieve

            gleaning luck or pretty coins

but in the morning, he will be

            nothing if not a vise of finches

rising purple

            from my blood