by Soyla Ise

I do not know where she goes in winter.
She lives, in summer, in the grapefruit garden—
chewing sugarplums her lovers bring,

shaving lobelias that grow on her tongue.
Her intestines are plugged with limescale; only
a gauze-skin remains of her heart.

She smiles like an insect and is
exquisite. She pours cold tea with china-
white fingers, mashes

earthworms with her thumbs,
violet eyes glittering in their preservative.
In the garden she moves slowly,

fleshy and pale, gleaming,
inhuman; kissing and peeling
fruits, washing her blood-logged fingernails