Involuted Velleities of Self-Erasure

 

 
 
 

after Frank Bidart

 
 

 

i.

 

What was left was not

nothing. Blurry

outline of a boy

paper epidermis abraded

to thin raw strips.

This world lets nothing remain

colorless. Please, I’ll be anything.

Draw me. Drown me in hue.

 

ii.

 

I’m not a hummingbird I’m not in love I’m not lying I’m not sick I’m not eating I’m not lying with a boy on a cliff in a dream I’m not in love with sick I’m not eating a hummingbird I don’t love him I don’t love him I’m not here

 

iii.

 

What was left was not nothing. It was hungry.

 

iv.

 

Unlatch the self-loathing.

Open the terror.

Climb out that window

into light.

Tomorrow.

 

v.

 

Draw me. Go ahead.

Let’s see you do it

without drowning.

 

vi.

 

My mouth is full

of blank receipts.

Who is responsible?

To whom can I return

this?

 

vii.

 

Unlatched the sick. Opened

the cliff. Climbed

out the hummingbird.

Go ahead. Draw me.

I’m not here.

 
 
 

Dylon Jones is a poet, essayist and journalist based in Louisville, Kentucky, where he serves as web editor of Louisville Magazine. He is a recipient of Sarabande Books' Flo Gault Poetry Prize, and his narrative journalism has earned him first-place awards in feature writing and profile reporting from the Society of Professional Journalists. His poems also appear in The Collagist.