once i yanked your grey taffy down into my ecosphere and let it go flapping back into your face like a window shade slopped with paint.
you looked at me like i was the same kind of crazy as you.
new york called me gypsy and I swung through the city on wrecking ball hips, listening to your records spin and dreaming of being the sticky oil that blackens your fingers and keeps you from rusting.
i used to walk the east village touching door handles i knew you’d touched.
first contact: i was smoking against a storefront down the block from the bulgarian bar and you went burning by like loki. the backdraft of your passing plunged me so deep into the brick mattress that my figure was engraved there when i peeled away; like i’d been smacked into the wall by a racket i clung there, aldante hung there until I cooled enough to slide back down to the pavement.
that night i shook myself free from a stack of ribboned fanmail.
i spun cyclones of dust on the dancefloor, swirled in dessert skirts while you stared me down, guitar growling. you yanked me around with fiddle strings, touched me as much as i could stand. there was a woman frothing and straining at her leash, she snarled and mocked my verse, but you, you sang at me, you chased me up the stairs serenading until i ran, neglecting to leave a shoe.
then you were back on tour and i was dragged screaming naked into sunlight, strapped to a gurney and hospitalized with sudden-death syndrome; the apple, the big apple, the biggest apple had lodged itself in my throat deep as an accident. that jewel drippy fruit from the center of the garden; practically candied, that dewy ripe ruby. i did not just eat but begged for it slavering, wet my face in its depths. it was an eye, but i was inside it, but it was looking at me and there was this
burst of confetti in my skull a
thousand tumbling raffle tickets a
clown maw closing behind a fork fulla my twirled guts.
synchronicity flooded the city like cereal milk and the sidewalks churned at me endlessly.
i saw you everywhere.
you were this chuffing tall mountain beyond the ward’s east-facing window,
an apparition flickering in the middle of the bridge to manhattan,
roughly one third of my insanity.
even in the shit heart of winter a fly sat on my cheek.
so shall i finally admit that i am enthralled?
since i was first washed with the shrapnel of your lungs shredded clean on big grater speakers, since first the thick floor gave in like a trampoline beneath the weight of your rhythm and my body whirled off without me.
your song has hung me on air, left me
nuclear wasted on countless elevated trains, disemvoweled,
pinned to subway doors by the alloy timbre of your gutter sneer each steel-woolly bray sending shudders through me right down to the tracks
like the way you say your rrrrrrs.
i want to fry my poetry at you in the dust of the heat, matador to your stampede of wind.
i hung off the lip of your stage and i saw ribs and scapulae beetling from your constellated back like they would yawn into a wing span.
there was the tooth-wrenching sound of stone unlatching from stone
and yes, i ran
but I heard you,
i hear you, rat
and i want to know what’s on the other side of that voice like lightning wants the ground.
i’ve got to know the raw smell of you.
the hiss of your lifeline smoldering in my cheek.
i want to drip digitally down your face in the hollow of hotel rooms while you’re away, slink off the page like pink perfume, slither in on an inhale and sprawl relentlessly across your sweating ripest organ, that skull bowl full of fruit milk gelatin quavering above your teeth.
i’ve been skirting midnight for fear of being caught out in rags but please, one taste of the opal dangling from your fang, just
one choking twist within your gnarled roots just
wring me through your knuckles and shred me on your frets