top of page

1 poem

by Caroline Rayner

Caroline Rayner is the author of calorie world (Sad Spell Press, 2017).


Braless against glass. Still in bed, like a useless machine. I promised I would but listen. Blue Ridge is dominating and the light is upsetting. Petal by fucking petal. I said listen which means abandon your jaw until night. Harvest moon, hunting moon, anyway. Not the mountain woman, not the drone woman. I put wine in the river because I know what cools like I know what thrives. I mean when it feels like hell in the shade. You should understand that a porch can betray a person. Legs wrapped, or crossed, or shaped like a guitar. Flannel, string light, parted blinds. Head got caught. I know how to be a sweetheart when it matters but I tell you what. The truth is that no one fucked me how I asked.


Nightgown, I said go ahead. This is not how it was. Delirious, baby. Fantasize about me wearing leather. Wish I could describe how I gathered every fucking star until my fucking hands went crazy then ran home like a fucking snake. You know what the truth is. Bloated, watching a movie in the grass. Long night moon, anyway. Bat in the kitchen, skull in the bathroom, where crumbling is a kind of ruin I can forgive when I curve near it in a vintage slip. Light puddles, then dissipates, and I fail at taking the kind of picture I hope will explain geometry. What I mean is texture is syntax. Braless against wallpaper. Iridescent ass. Late for therapy. Put on a guided meditation, then dive into a volcano.


Why is it I get to be some type of way. Jellyfish in the river type of way. Lotus milkshake type of way. Bathtub type of way. You can see me getting dressed in the window. Shapeless, ballooning when I move. Oceanic is the feeling. I am not gonna bend over backwards, not for you, not for anybody. Same as a chandelier flinging light. I mean spitting rainbows into the room. Is there a name for it. Am I crazy for asking.


Sit with me in the yard, chat with me about death, burn with me. Kitchen table dragged for one reason, piano dragged for another. Ghost came the night I was gone. I would have made the bed until it hurt. Tossed the salad, whipped the butter. No way around it, especially when the cake demands being shaped like a myth, anyway. Did you bring river boots.

bottom of page