behind this door and many doors,
all the souls in this family
and moonlight outlining the neon backroom,
dark Chinatown strangers and trees and trees.
later when we touch,
I am wondering
about the cost of hands
moving swift across a rose bed of time,
feeling your skin, where it detangles equations for longing
and this household’s aches at work
folding, washing, drying
the body can live on so little
that maybe it is stone, a planetary mass.
the cabbage roses whistle
and hum, grow large
like a wedding
I watch faces grow still dead fly in the glass
across linoleum tiles, flesh
of my endless mother kneeling
all the manic romance of the pure world
how it pins your feet to the floor
where the buds begin opening
some of them are love poems
some of them are ghosts
some skeletons descend their staircases,
like light becoming what it is
as it tangles through evening,
to lie deserted
across your doorstep like all these flowers.
C. X. Hua is a poet and artist. She was previously a Finalist for the Norman Mailer Awards in Poetry, and a fellow with Brooklyn Poets. She has been published in Electric Lit, Boulevard, and the Los Angeles Review.