Juliet Cook: Three Poems

From One Ruined Human to Another

Many of us want to quickly replace what falls apart.
Not just ripped socks, but a dead dog covered up
by a new dog.

If one dark hair
ruins a relationship, we can replicate our love
into another body.

Another drink
for the eyes, any cup size,
as long as someone else is in our bed.

As long as we don’t have to sleep alone for long enough
to think about who we really are, what we really want,
and why loneliness scares us closer and closer to death.
And so loneliness scares us closer and closer to love.

Many of us trash dull utensils, a cracked glass.
Half empty or half full doesn’t matter, as long as it can be replaced
with a different better half.

As long as we can fill up our own broken parts
with someone else’s.

*

When I Used to be a Little Girl

Sometimes I just walked around in circles,
telling a story inside my head. I went downstairs into the basement,
so that I wasn’t interrupted by the noises.

The basement was a big concrete floor with boxes
and old clothes and unorganized storage bins
filled with letters and ripped out hearts.

I was in that space where it was just the floor
and my mind and my legs and I was walking around in my circles,
telling my story, focused on what was going on inside me.

When I finally glanced down, there was a circle shape
of blood on the floor. It was dripping from in between
my legs, brightening the cold concrete surroundings. 

 

*

Everyone Handles Death Differently?

Even if I can’t save myself, I still photograph the dead birds
and save their remains. Dead remnants infiltrate
the memory box. I meant it when I said it. Maybe
he did not. Otherwise, how could I have been so easy
to replace? Every dead bird is different. Different size,
different shape, different structure, different missing parts,
different little dead hearts. Different causes of their demise.

I replaced brains with hearts then wanted to rip my heart out,
then thought about pouring another heavy dose
of sweet cream into the latest small bird coffin.
Everyone handles lost love differently.
I think dead birds will always love me more
than living humans ever really will from here on out.

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