The Gypsies

Beneath my heart

my soul

and dancing gypsies

resting with a hip sway in oblivion to the chaos of my

epidermis.

If every cut, scrape, bruise were not a portal to my insides.

My internal nomad,

inhaling and exhaling in the space between my lungs.

Beneath my heart

my soul

bleeding out, clueless.

Squeezed from soaking hip scarves

Red cell after red cell

jingling like coins

draining from the rain-catcher

of every human experience I will ever have to face as an artist.

People see my eyes and assume there is more than life behind them

the way they assume gypsies dance because they’re happy.

And there is not a day where I don’t wonder

if people have caught glimpses of themselves

reflected on the edges of dull blades

brushed across their skin

ever so gently like a pen gliding seamless across

lined paper.

And I know writing is a form of self-mutilation

and I sleep uneasy.

Beneath my heart,

my soul,

what I’ve hidden inside my shell of flesh

squirming deformed

like an infant newly amputeed.

It’s shrill cry so loud it’s silent,

reshaping my carved mind into carnival music

building and unbuilding wordform compulsively.

“Poet” they say

“Poet”

Like a mandate of Shakespeare.

I am sonnets and rhyming and roses and violets

firmly pushed beneath visitor glass,

pulsing to the beat of tambourines.

Beneath my heart- shhh

If you’re quiet sometimes you can hear them.