July 14, 2017

Sandra M. Yee

YOUR SHIPWRECK OR MINE?

for JCV

Zoo-like is how I like you, contained but not
too tamed, buttery billfold hiding

twin coins of want and want. Between us
the ocean beckons, and you dip

into my desert marine to unshell me,
dispel me from the illusion of water

everywhere and not a drop for me to drink.
You need no adornment or in this case

a shorning for the already-delectable,
and if personal hell is the price

for such pleasure, bring me a double
and tie me fast to weather

yet another season of bodily crisis
and acts-of-god doubt. In a handful

of days already we are changing
each other because we need

and want change. I’ll take your divorce
and raise you four deaths, your near-

paralysis to my near-blindness,
and these daddy issues that threaten

to collapse both our houses. Yes,
the past scars, the future scares us,

but here now the union of spare parts
and untidy ruins and the miracle

of these loosed hearts able
to desire again and again and again.

from Rattle #55, Spring 2017

[download audio]

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Sandra M. Yee: “I didn’t think I was depressed enough to write poetry, but then I took my first poetry class at a community college and was introduced to Susan Mitchell’s ‘Pussy Willow (An Apology).’ My classmates and I tried our best to analyze the poem in class discussion, and after half an hour of our stumbling and fumbling for words, the teacher finally asked did we not realize the poem was about masturbation? A gaudy neon light zapped on over my head, and thereafter, I was hooked.”