To be in an unsuspecting downtown area,
warming my hands on the same current,
with my shoulders touching my ears—
no—I want to look like light and fall asleep
with a different pulsing heartbeat.
To travel through lifetimes of anticipation,
and moments of utter terror,
of near-death and teetering on edges,
and firsts, lasts, and drugs and men—
I would voyeur unto the coil of eternity.
To glide on the surface of skin,
like the rhythmic beat of a monitor,
a coincidence of selves and heat and breath
in the back of a car, in the back of a theater parking lot—
could you take me there?
Just (for the love of God) to evade this chair, this life,
to be anywhere else, with anyone else,
yes, anyone else,
I’d rather be the nightmare than live with—
amnesia, amnesia, amnesia.
To run my own hands down my hips and feel something
other than fear, other than shame, other than longing,
and sleep in my childhood bed or any bed
without drifting to that place—
I am always a little in that place.
To retrieve those pictures I deleted,
shredded with claws, out of spite,
their digital footprints look like leaflets,
as if it would matter—my stomach is a bunker—
my mind is full of petroleum.
To cling to the burn in my throat and the note in a box,
the pinked bullet wound on my neck,
the bones I keep from different bodies,
and wash my lacerations with their ashes—
I cannot heal in fire.
Lexys Sillin is a nonfiction writer and poet from Iowa City. Read her latest essays in Fool's Magazine and poetry in The Appendix. You can follow Lexys on Instagram at @anxiousfeaturesstudio to see her visual artworks.