A Girl Wants

Last week, to the man I’ve never met, I sent a text:

I don’t know…what I have to
say, who’s it to? I’m still trying
to figure it out. We write into
each other.

Later, the man I’m sleeping with leaves a sticky note on my car,
One word, blinking in my face:

Brilliant.

The next morning, I text the man
I’ve never met, again:

What can I do?
I don’t want to be here.

He responds:

OK. If not here, then where?

I text:

Where? Nowhere.

He responds:

There is no nowhere.

I think of the nowhere where there are long baths, and sound.
Where nothing is eaten like honey on a spoon.

The man I’m sleeping with tells me it’s ok to cry and not talk as he’s listening on the other end of the phone.

A dog howls in the neighborhood while I’m sitting in cold bathwater.

The howl seems to come from the deepest part, so deep I do not want to listen, but I am sitting in the water, not wanting to move, ripple things, so I listen.

A girl wakes, crawls out, shudders.

She’s been roaming for days,
I thought, inside.

Shut me away,
I plead.

Go back inside, shut up, stop
howling, I can’t make my arms be her arms.

As my friend read her poetry to an audience, I dug my nails into my forearm.
I want nowhere.

Still, now,
As I write this, a girl wants blood.

Still, the howling,
Hanging in the air, in the heat,
Missing a fan, sanity.

I called the voice in my head.

There’s a train out now. The dog’s
Not howling anymore. There’s still
The heat pressing on me.

The voice says

Fuck the poets. Why write for anyone?

So I text the man I’m sleeping with after he reads this poem and says

It’s good.

I reply:

It’s shit. And I have no fan. And
My landlord won’t get it out of
The attic. And I’m going to
Fucking throw my phone out
The window.

Then, an ex professor sends me an email:

I always considered writing to be the “unnatural” equivalent of a hard on.

While the man I’m sleeping with sends me the serenity prayer,

I write:

A girl wants blood.

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