Issue 14

Poetry: Lisa Fink

Her Disco [2]

Into our fire, our butterfly
Antennae, our water

Boatmen. Our wheat-fields,
      Nonsense, &

We found what was written
On the margins

Of a palimpsest on drift-wood.
      Our sisters of the sea.
Of our sisters.

Our palms
      Burn into definition.

Oh, the bombs that burned us,
Our sea-shell husks of self.

We step out of them
Like syllables.

We are all a bride,
& (then again) not.

Little Lament

for Elise

the baby fell asleep in my arms while I waited for flowers—
peonies, water-heavy roses arranged for leaving,
aster’s exhalations and inhalations, the thinness of wet leaves,

one part baby one part me
she doesn’t have any teeth
her small yawn, a bird’s whisper
crushed mint, a sigh

the mother moved about quickly snipping green leaves,
lopping off long stalks of rosemary, seeded eucalyptus
and billy balls smelling of ever, honey and yellow

No Vacancy

When I heard her voice tonight,
a fan blowing and bringing the rain,

quiet, relatively: still,

I clasped my hands in front
in a nonexistent prayer.


Mother Theresa says that when she prays
she gets quiet and listens for God.

Someone asked once what God said to her.
She replied, “Nothing…

He’s listening, too.”


My father grows peacocks in a wire enclosure
in his backyard. The feathers they lose—

held up close—look like the feathered antennae of moths,
thin backbones and ribcages of bird skeletons,

leftover chicken scraps from people who eat meat
off the bone.


A Painted Lady hovers in a net before she’s stuffed
in a viewing box. Her nervure glows neon
against nipplewort.

She rests gently on the bottom of the clear
plastic, waiting.


You told me that
what matters most is to be honest to yourself
in the end.


She recites words I can’t understand in a language I don’t know,
Venus behind a microphone.


Can I open my eyes now?

Her Disco [3]

We place these things in our room
for collection. Making

her science, We
of many forms:

breast & curved tongue.
Of this collection curious:

Laboratory, theatre. Come
into our room, the cabinet.

Our floating world
with worm-holes out,

with curved horns
& oyster shells.

Pearls on a high shelf
on high air.

Our room with dark
windows that blink

like black eyes.
Walls, the walls, the walls.

You fall & fall
deeper & deeper

& deeper in.

Her Disco [4]

Her disco, her dilate
isolate, her wandering star

what felt like floating
was actually falling

our great-mother, our sister-O
serious breakage into fragment

into history, bell pattern
& distillation; the car

falls into nothingness, into
Greece, Egypt. the car the ear

is moving backwards down
the street like a flame

on rewind. red, orange-red,
blue, green-blue, & white,

white-white. Our great-mother,
her disco spinneth.