Natalie Ada Mariko: #MeToo Series

Natalie Ada Mariko: #MeToo Series
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'count to a hundred'



suffering objectively



is a division

by zero. what indefinite can

measure depths


in skin?” it is paneless & the nose has warped

                        the frame w/ breathing heat.


mother & father turn

on the stovetop, bright as a girl

poking ladybirds' spots.


she stops & the # is truly great, but none—


her tongue

is a broken rudder stranding;

                        an albatross @ first

landing; the glint of a scope

                        stood ashore

w/out a thought




frankenstein @ the lake


the creature stood @ the glaze of a lake mist preening

her jaw w/ a bone-brush from a wounded doe


the flask of her eyes sunk in the drinking night

twin draughts gleaming some rotted melody on a body


in the lake which schlupped ashore smooth as driftwood

i approached her but held my unlit torch besides


the creature leapt to sniff me out in the gloam

her heft collapsing slow as a wilting pansy


i came close to touch what i'd shocked to life

& said:

            “revoke! undo! turn back or sail due north!


there is no bough here worth the dint of your sorrows!

no sword in waiting! no apple bobbed can bear you!


you will be starved! you will be listless! you will drown

& yet want for water!”

                                    the creature turned:


“but i am grander than a placard or post

pending the route to a more sagely Avalon

or the whispers of kittens seen only through

a wall chink! that isn't nor will be my end!:

                        to be tending, never tended!


i am not a window! not a leaf on the lake!

i am the terror of seeing! a maskless hail!


a firecracker! a flare-gun! a gunpowder cask

in a burning building! i am what No One confronts!


                        a cracked mirror in the dark

painted in the lipstick of a bruise black shade!”


& through! the glim of torches went tearing

& the creature stepped, wombless, a mother

                        to wait in the murk of that lake.

Natalie Ada Mariko is a transwoman poet from New Jersey.