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stephanie roberts


mazzie lies supine on my couch all day, waiting for any rescue from inertia and the other physical laws—patient that the german train of karma is running late, as any fantastic believer in deus ex macchina calls resignation courage. you’d have to crawl on your belly to look up from her sea level—homeless, if we see things as they are, and somehow unloved, the call that is made when the doctor re-breaks the arm to set the crack correctly. we should open a cupcake shop named Cloying & Paranoia where mazzie may be useful in her sweetness, tense between spliffs and demure over desire —every sip of wine brings a justification from her (which is starting to work my thirsty nerves). she explains her sleeping bag as: camping, to the delivery guy and or anyone that enters the room. no one is that interested and perhaps that’s the problem impatient for explanation. it’s the why of a dropped egg oozing its useless over the linoleum. why dye your hair grey? why were you arrested? why not curse the god that gave you sleep with no dreams? why do you want to live in silence? that last one is mine, who feel no need to


ironically, in the morning, the soles of your feet ache, only after you’ve rested them in dreaming. plantar fasciitis, to companion the broken glass strewn over the last inches of life toward the downer of decrepitude.

across from these pessimistic manias, against a duck down pillow, the summer peach of your days, breathes mortality’s fragrance from a landscape, known and beloved as coney island. and the years (kind and not) folded and unfolded the flesh surface to the jaw, where this whole damn loveliness hinges bello with the bloom of a semi-harvested field of stubble. a stiff brush from a man’s pain that abrades the willing path down an unclenched valley with sighs made of fire.

open your hymnals to sixteen ninety-one.

this is the other who is also the same, the one whose eyes spark an amber intoxicant of attraction. this is the x at hell’s crossroad, where the spring river swollen and unfrozen tears through you high and gasping. your grip on the rim of reason is mystery and your shared blood-type, where no wrinkle nor darkness dare.

repeat after me. repeat after me.

you could twist all broken up over the grey, white, cold, and always the coming november, if you’re fool enough to hoard the misery-coloured days’ subtractions, instead of the violet flare of this early hour’s jazz and the melancholy measures of ben wolfe and orrin evans. it raises the salt level in the eyes, oh yes it does sisters, and now you decide again to be grateful, praying to the sleeper beside you (a known foolishness but thoughtful), thanking him (your god!) for his very survival, just be! and then comes the amen of the tips of god’s waking, first, middle, and third, fingers placed on your tongue the preamble to prayer and the opening liturgy of i love you.


stephanie roberts is a poet and interdisciplinary artist. Her writing has been featured or is forthcoming in issues of Blue Lyra Review, CV2, and A Literation Magazine. Originally from the East New York section of Brooklyn, she’s lived pour beaucoup des années, in a wee town, just outside of Montréal, Canada.

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