What is a glass, a bottle,
a throat and belly burn
in the wake of all this cold water?
If this is a rescue,
which one of us is in distress?
I digress, regress, remiss, dismiss,
it’s just that the way the sun rose this morning
looked more like opportunity than light-scour.
My love, a burden,
and you, the witness,
and we, and we,
swallow down the burn
as if it makes us
am kennedy, “Solidarity”
Her love you weigh by
the degrees she bends to you,
like a sunflower
reaching for sustenance,
and finding none.
Let it go, you know,
that woman has never tucked you
into anything so safe as a bed.
She said, i love you,
but that’s not what she meant.
The cement in the bottom of your heart
means that sometimes you
sink faster than you swim,
but then again the brine
tastes better than tears,
better than all the fears
she read you as bedtime stories.
You’re a bad buoy but a good sailor,
a turn of tides that would
make a grown man weep
could he see how carefully you keep
your head above water.
He’s so in love with his own ruin.
Suffering is a rouge he wears
high on his cheeks,
the imitation of life,
the kiss of death.
He puts the worst foot forward,
anticipating the fall, the crash,
the rock and the hard place.
He’s a running collection of scars,
that you don’t want to be apart of,
you really don’t.
the way you want to fall into him,
every time you see his bleeding heart,
you kind of do.
am kennedy, “An Imminent Disaster”
Hands around her throat,
maybe it’s hard to tell the difference.
Wires crossed, lovers crossed,
cross your heart and hope to choke.
What is right after the wrong,
the held down, the ground up,
the torn around.
Spark plugs jammed back in a jumble,
now softness feels like barbed wire,
a desire to run.
Lean into car crashes,
look for whiplashes,
close your eyes and imagine fingers
clenching around windpipes.
It takes a long time to readjust,
learn to trust,
not to take your hand to fire
and thrust– thrust–
am kennedy, “Purple Swallows”
If this is going to be patchwork,
then there’s going to be shears.
Cut around those who tore your seams,
plucked and unraveled your loose threads,
cut them out and grab for better,
for rough spun fabric that does not rip.
You don’t have to be beautiful to be strong,
you can wield scissors like a threat,
like a promise, like it’s been
too many years and too much shit
and you are not going to take
am kennedy, “Fabric scissors”
My mother ran from a box to a bear trap,
and now we all sit around the metal teeth
praying for rain and rust.
Ask me why she’s dying and
I’ll show you show you a cancer
that can kill an entire family.
If no one ever tells you that metal is malleable,
perhaps you will always believe
that you too must lay down in the trap
and die there.
am kennedy, “Martyr Mother of the Maladjusted”