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by Erica Dawson

NELLE 1 | 2018

You love. I’m interested in exodus—
the leaving.

          As we’re praising Lazarus,
You cry. But I’m thinking that, next to this,
the exequy, there’s nothing better than the fuss
the body makes over itself.

                                That rigor—

liquids expelled and firm muscles, the bone
the only lasting truth that can’t transfigure
itself to something worse or better.

                                        I’ve thrown
a stone into a brook to break my face,
scratched my skin raw to know just how it felt—
attacked by your own person. I kissed the pelt
of a sheep sick with black leg.

                                    There is such space,
before the empty caves become the tombs.
Space for going. The flight the air exhumes.

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