the art of pressing flowers
is all about preservation
to keep voluptuous blossoms
at their peak, forever

dry them, meticulously
lay them between pages
of old books, press memories
beneath the weight of Tolstoy

leave them, you will soon forget
to return to the obituaries
pages eaten up with mold,
petals that crumble to
the touch

a two dimensional bouquet
yet you have still preserved
nothing but ash


healing is
blood and bile
mucus and grime
it grips you, shakes you
like the unmistakable howl
of a forgotten dog
nothing is the same
everything has become
black and white
and cigarettes
by the time I see you again
my stomach lining will
have been stripped to nothing

Prayers From Dust

doubled over
sharing whispers with the tiles
tasting the sand between shakes
the only way my body knows
how to beg for help
is through bruises

knees fold over one another
crashing down, syncope
sink to the stone floor

thousands of miles away
from my temple, double down
prayers through muddy tears
between breaths, my body
begs with what little
it has left: take me instead