By Ginna Luck

There Has Never Been So Many Waist Bins, So Many Banged
Out Old Garbage Lids

I ask you to love me and then work every hour toward a feeling of insufficiency so complete it becomes a city of spectacular buildings: a spire about to explode in the sunset, a steal skeleton refracting like an electric dancer, sky-scraped and bleached with lightening. You enter expecting magic to happen and instead a deformed tower rises up in a car lot.

I ask you to love me and then dangle your heart outside an apartment complex like toilet paper aorta smeared and sick with its own pain seeping through a greasy curtain. Another dead condo is about to be toppled cracked, hemorrhaging out a skylight. My clavicle is caving in.

I ask you to love me helplessly from a place of weakness from the ground torn to dirt so there is no steady place to stand. Stay with me. Stay only with me. Stay in the overturned earth and metal of a dead year. In a city that broke up and out of my hands like a cage of cracked windows.

There is always a fire alarm blaring under my shirt. Always industrialized landscapes up ahead somewhere, machines building new machines building a duplex forest of waste and more waste that can’t be kept. The problem is this is not a city that stops.




I thought I shouldn’t listen to the incessant demands of my body.
I thought my hunger was the hollow sky I was in love with. I wanted to feel
my hip bones like their own perfect story
glowing of my brilliant control. I wanted to close my teeth
on my continuing discomfort, uncurl into a ghost that wandered out of myself and into whatever
else was comfortable in the dust like more dust in a column of dusty light
coming down on me in a mindless grimy sunset.

I was caught in its ridiculous hands, alive only in its fingers. I’m talking about denial
so complete, its loss became an unplaceable thing inside me. An unknowable vessel.
A fifty-pound block of my own beefed-up pain, fat and ripe like a dead
horse’s thick, sun crusted meat. Everything moved

ahead in small unequal pieces and outward in every direction. And although there was nothing
left for me to see, I kept seeing all that was not actually there: what I’d always had becoming
the thing I’d lost slowly repeating on the ground next to me, again.

And the stranger I saw looking back through the mirror was a child who could barely
speak, whose face was covered in brambles, and not just covered, tangled over and through
unable, at last, to pretend there was anything else happening.

Ginna Luck's work can be read in Radar Poetry, Gone Lawn, decomP, Hermeneutic Chaos Journal, Bodega, Leveler Poetry and others. She has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and has an MFA from Goddard College. She currently lives in Seattle with her husband and three boys.

© 2019