by gm

Liz Howard

The first person singular does not exist in the physical world,

it’s a ghost.
……………………-V. S. Ramachandran, New Scientist


A room with a view

summer holidays digressing

into the heartstrings of a bad faith

chorus. Along the balcony of our latter

days each subatomic thrum is a past

note there’s no coming back from.

Fullness of forest mushrooms

before rot sets in. The reward centre

of minor sins, post-present. A tender

pressure against the caul or thin

gauze of skin infinity filters though

and finds us human. Nothing but rain

for days my Id a sump pump so I’ll not

argue with this weather. I’m already lost

to the hard plumb of a liquid centre

a dead ringer for the first person singular

on my knees and partially dressed

as you’d have it but I’m outside of this

waiting for my arraignment

within expression while the lights

along my street are leaking beams

teething a sodium brace along the base

of my skull. Grave-to-cradle cap over

a brainstem I can’t slap for blooming

a draft I’d never have picked.

My wet cells kindling another

mirror the sense-presence of you

as in childhood false promises flew

like wind through poplars. Each leaf

a paper snap, a little skirt in the updraft.

The stars aren’t keeping track but I know

how to score this. I don’t forgive you

and you don’t need to be forgiven.

My mistrusted I velvet fastened

to whatever happens. Such is the feeling

as the moon rises perpendicular to my view

outside of time and half-bred consequence

you can’t send me back to my room.