It’s 10 o’clock

Where are the poems in the dead
of night, when the heart no longer stews desire
for the mind to take a warm bath, when it’s
no longer strong enough to force a cardiac creation
of landscapes for the lonely entitled ego

when picket fences turn to rotted teeth felled
into the angry neighbor’s yard, when the toxic
wife’s cum ignites your pussy hairs, straightens the
naps and calls you a “nigga-hatin’ bitch”, when her
dreamy writing of your name on her arm feels like
nothing more than a threat

Where are the poems when your bloody fingers
work to scrub apathy from your daughter’s tongue, when
you take her kayaking and she drowns, when she
haunts you, squeezes your nose shut at 4am
every morning, when your torso ejects from the bed, when
your mouth screams in terror watching your wife grows glass
shards of blame from her skin.
the air, heavy with creaks and her groans as she turns
in the bed, opens her arms
and pulls you into her?

Where are the
poems when your open mouth, a chalice,
begs for benediction and your eyes catch
your mother’s body shying away in the mirror,
scared of who you’ve become?

I let strangers’ tongues lick notes around my body, a shawl
or shroud, I am unsure. To burn me alive, or
gently to my death, I am unsure.
Either way, I am finally,
finally, warm.

-Stephanie Ambroise


2 thoughts on “It’s 10 o’clock

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