by Meredith Faulkner
I am my own warzone.
Bootprints slice through snowy cellulite,
marching onward to the motherland,
until hypothermia wins the war.
I am marooned on my own mind.
Fog tiptoes around the downy hairs
above my knees and hides empty brass shells
planted in a cemetery of freckles,
buried just deep enough to sprout self-loathing.
I am corrugated with sorrow and scars.
Tank tracks have dug up my wrists
and upturned my ancestors’ graves
that make for fertile topsoil and breed
the loneliness only the dead know
(and those who wish to join them).
I am somewhere between therapy and cartography.
Somewhere on my thigh, a lone survivor
sculpted her lifewish out of her family’s bodies.
Her cousin is the crossbar of the H. E: broken
and bent brothers, and the L is as tall her father’s gaze.
Her mother, fetal and waterlogged, completes the P.
The helicopters are too polite to ask about it.
Though I have wandered in no-man’s-land for forty days
and forty rainless nights, I still feel like a battlefield.