This poem is taken from Stand 223, 17(3) September - November 2019.

Maria Sledmere Poem
4st 7lb

Too much revolt comes out of the trees and the bassline of bone around the edge. You have the wafer light or you crumble it back into leaves. This discipline; despair happens quick or it doesn’t happen at all. I watched her collapse back onto the earlier version, a small struggle of consciousness that glowed with target. At the chorus, I started to rot. The woods filling up with snow and asking for December all over again. The footprints were colours. I pulled back the snow and wanted to eat all the colour. Several holocausts happened at once in the distance. We knew this because of our ancestors. We knew this because of the light. It seems to fold the holy bible like moths and a dust we don’t know, a dust that isn’t us. My breath is sinking. I choke on the bunnies we tried to kill first. I can change, I coil like the animals back into thinness. What are we asked to bear witness to? There is something of the world I don’t want to soil. Modulation, naval/halo and the dream extracted; I felt marmoreal on the train, watching the famous people eat. Days since I last felt sweat, and the spook of the lights in monochrome, diatonic. Step on the scales, I’m getting better. The box set spilled out too many hooks and we started to forget the woods again. We were the trees in the woods that knew us, we had nothing but t-shirts. I was learning to write, I drew fingers in the snow until a word appeared and the word was COLLAPSE. And the trees reassured me that this was the birth of a sexless lyric. I started to cry for multiplicity; I wanted the future to end in me. This was a song about somebody else. My nails turned blue. This was the cutlery we held to the cloud, for the lightning came. I was born into the lightning. I can change. The rings on the trunks of the trees are moods, fluctuating colours for seasons. Drift through the woods at a slant; we took breaths at the bit where the key shifts, a weakness. The flame was the lid of the flame of the milk, we kept saying to her you have a choice. I love everything in my hullabaloo. Hey.
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