NYU Black Renaissance Noire Spring 2015 - Page 88

By CATHERINE BOWMAN Stalker, a Ghost Flower I pressed my lips to the foreskin of the windowpane, fruit-wet with a night delivery of ground cloud from a forgotten ocean gliding over the fields, here to the garden, turning viburnum and weeds into a distillery of perfume at dawn before the cure of French roast and you still asleep in feather down. I wiped my lips of the pre-june with the back of my hand, swallowed, renewed, my fingers smelled of the lowlands where I unfurled and flailed and spun in the wind. I kissed the pane again and again — Did you know I was out there, locked out? This glazed transparency I kissed, the cool pleasure of contact, so thirsty, blessed dew, how the impression of my lips ghost-like disappeared, my reflection so uncut it could have been my brother’s. Lips on glass — gentle — sometimes I kiss metal — like a dog licking an old fire poker, craving mineral. Once I kissed the mouth of a revolver to see how it felt. Kissed rocks from the bottom of the ocean, ate red clay — as a child at the edge of the desert I lived one summer on wild berries and rose petals that littered the carport across the street. I was hungry. The beasting: the first taste, a mix of milk and blood after the lambing. 86 My mouth a haven. I will not harm you. Like lightning — I need an element between you and me. BRN-SPRING-2015.indb 86 3/29/15 11:42 AM