Crude Does Not Become You

by Alison Graham

“The doctor should be opaque to his patients and, like a mirror, should show them nothing but what is shown to him.” – Sigmund Freud

Styrofoam-heavy, tonguing
sagged grapefruit (I blush).
Watching an eclipse through colanders
has an irony I fail to place.

Crawled, up these stairs
‘til you ran out of knee and
cognized the stages of grief by ten green bottles,
hanging on the wattle wall–
limp-wristed bastard–
five green bottles. No,
metronomes. No, rubbish tips of glassblower
sighs. Playing the

conductor’s bête noire, you ask why.
Through my hair I rub disinfectant and of the
lessons to learn I devour truly. Now
you have seen how to malign microbes,
how to cascade. See it drip
noiseless and blinking. I give no issue.

Again, you asked and round my throat
I gesture because love is without
larynx, without child but not me!
not I! A thinking body which must be to grasp
why your thighs which once were
Eden reap dust like taxes and to

the boss the man gave no
bouquet but threw a shoe
one two and at our feet
shrouds pooled so we looked and
locked away. It’s just collateral, baby.

Would you believe it, would you assemble into
a rich quilt, a thing of beauty. Some
time I stepping
backward will cry out truth,
applauding the needle into my bone crux,

with confidence and unconsidered body.
Anyway, we (the worst kind of feeble) return
to petrol stations: I did not know then
to give out larynxes like sweets, crude futures
fashioned. I learned

styrofoam is ninety five parts air
and kills by choking, millennia
after becoming – would you believe

(chemistry makes poetry). Would you,
bone of my bone, walk

unfettered through the orchard
schlepping gowns for christening.
Until then: fill up the tank,
bawl the orchard,
above all give out and do this
because because because.