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I’m Sitting with Björk in my Bathtub

& she leans, takes my knee in her mouth, like a puppy.

this is her song. I am a pale mountain from her native

landscape. she moans & it is my name. it is not sexy, it is

sexual. my blue wrist suckled in her other mouth is an

enchilada. I think about how my car won’t sell on

Craigslist. I think about how ill-prepared I am to do my

taxes. she can tell my mind is elsewhere. she doesn’t

mind. she sucks a peach. I take her photograph & it is a

Selfie. there are so many ways to need yourself. a faint

nipple through the bubbles. she has no reason to hide

from me. we are sisters in the army of almost. it is the

way we flirt. we are never bored. Björk uses a can-

opener to open the bathwater. it’s working.

she slides my mental hospital evaluation papers into the

water, so they dissipate into tiny paper fish. this is her

song. I am a mossy stone remembering its past life as a

bird. she names every doctor who never met my eye. it is

not political, it is a curse. my chest is an ivy wall

replenished by her hacking hands. I think about how I

threw up the bad medicine. I think about being told to

just swallow it. she can tell I am reliving the neon isolation

of mind-jail. she doesn’t flinch. just sucks a jawbreaker. I

see her tongue change color & exhale a fuck of rivers.

there are so many ways to crown yourself. a perfect

nipple glaciers thru. she has no reason to judge me. we

are sisters in the queendom of Self. it is the way we work.

we are sweetened sweat. Björk puts a straw to my

forehead & drinks the suds. it’s lovely. her eyes are truth

wagons chugging along ancient dirt.

from Odes to LithiumFind more by Shira Erlichman at the library

Copyright © 2019 Shira Erlichman
Used with the permission of The Permissions Company, LLC on behalf of Alice James Books.

Published in Poems Shira Erlichman

This program is supported in part by a grant from the Idaho Humanities Council, a State-based program of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this (publication, website, exhibit, etc.) do not necessarily represent those of the Idaho Humanities Council or the National Endowment for the Humanities.