a.v., whom i've dreamt

At the core of our empathy, lies a tendency in us to crave pain- conspicuous, undeniable pain. The kind of pain that shifts languages and lives. The kind that tips expression over the edge.

sam sax once said that the body “rages, riots, and rots” / unlit post diagnosis

tired / of the blood cells that won’t multiply on time / shitting where i sleep
last night, i dreamt i was gutted and served/ praying

that someone would show themselves
at my bed
to braid courage into my hair

i am not the kind of woman who dies writing poems in the palms of her
hands—reminders to b r e a t h e

my head
like a pale perennial

my mother feeds me

i am barely a body (some weird chassis)

and yet,
the heart still b e a t s.

it is simple:

i am a woman that craves a literature
that does not talk of the ghost of myself, but
what a privilege it is to be a vessel of such strange

a.v., whom i’ve dreamt by afieya kipp