October Comes New Skin Itch

by Lena Ziegler

I’m in the mood for saline/the fog of lower back
can you smell it on me/wring want from melon-air
when April comes I imagine knowing again
& the daily work of take & breathe will be
hallways, stillborn & whispering
I’m in the mood for Christmas lights/wreathes shaped
like swallowing/& you/& you/& you
to fuck me something holy
I want your strangle/that mouth
leaves burn-marks the shape of uprising
we are already stranger/s in five years we’ll be hauntings
& hole-cut bodies & river-trenches furrowing/scraped
& animal & animal & animal hungering
I’m in the mood for meat & bone/predator-raping
do you smell it on me/flesh somehow grows
when October comes new skin itch & itch & itch
something savage/& leak fire in front of strangers
this pepper-heart still & born/decomposing
is nothing if not wanting.

 

Artist: Josh Hayward

Lena Ziegler is the author of MASH (The A3 Press) and editor and co-founder of The Hunger. She was a finalist in the Autumn House Press 2018 Fiction contest and the 2017 Goldline Press Non-fiction contest. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Indiana Review, Split Lip Magazine, Dream Pop Press, Yes, Poetry, The Seventh Wave, Gambling the Aisle, Literary Orphans, The Flexible Persona, Anti-Heroin Chic, and others. She holds an MFA from Western Kentucky University and is pursuing her Ph.D. at Bowling Green State University.