Poem by Elizabeth Zinn

Photography © TJ Edson

 

Broken Hands
May 15, 2015

I don’t like this feeling;
This empty, this
running up stairs and falling, this
unlit matchstick, this
dragging legs on pavement,
this singed,
this scorched,
this damp,
this house is not –
this world is not
a home.

My hands are broken but they still write.

I like the feeling of dreaming.
Closed eyes envision your hands on my bare shoulders,
running your fingers over,
testing the blades for sharpness
as you lay me down
to kiss my clothes off.
I like the feeling of the look in your eyes
and the yes that you take from my lips.

I like the feeling of wine-stained teeth after a full glass, leaving space for the hue of another
to float on my lips,
sail on my tongue
and swim down my throat
through ocean of blood,
claiming the land of my body,
its own.

I like the feeling of take me away.

I like the feeling of wander.

I like the feeling of smoke replacing the air in my lungs with numb.

I like the feeling of sun
on construction site,
building a thought,
a dream, a goal,
a prayer against a lie.

But this,
this lost and lonesome, this
desert dirt road, this
muffled scream, this
blood-letting soul,
this migraine maze,
this discarded thought,
returning revenge –
I don’t like this feeling.

I’m screaming,
“Replace me!”,
knocking on walls in a 5×8 closet in a school for the deaf.

You tested for sharpness and now your fingers are stained with the blood of my past;
they look like my teeth but a bit less red.
My lips,
now stained with the lies of the sangria wine
and my lungs, disturbed
by the air from this place they believe they need;
but it’s a slow death,
a morphine drip,
to make you believe there’s no pain
when it’s the only sensation you know;
to keep you here,
dulled –
this house is not –
this world is not
a home.

My hands are broken but they still write.

I like the feeling of pen
crashing on page,
writing scripts for words to call home,
drawing maps,
marking time,
when I’ll walk through streets my feet can feel safe in.

I like that feeling.
I don’t like the feeling leading up to the fracture –
the floating and spinning, the
fear, the
where are we now?
the pencil with erasers on both sides,
writing in language of circular logic –
but I like the feeling of breaking.

I don’t like the feeling of healing –
but I can respect the process.

The house I’ve not built,
the world I’ve not written
is not a home

yet –

My hands are broken
but they still write.

 

Photography © TJ Edson
Photography © TJ Edson

 

Elizabeth Zinn is a poet and musician who performs in the Boston and New York metro areas or wherever her heart, soul and feet take her. She is published in various magazines and journals and founder of wordsoflyzzdom.com and predictivetextpoetry.net.

TJ Edson is the Art Director of Oddball Magazine and a volunteer at the Out of The Blue Art Gallery. He has also had work appear recently in Boston Compass.