after Richard Siken
Pull down my collar and trace the spot where the cat got its claws in me.
Press your thumb under my eyeball until you feel it
This is the grit of it, the dirt on your hands smudged on
my teeth now. The dirt in my stomach rolls over.
I know I’m going to die
with my head down like a dog. I’m going to die
with handprints on my back.
This is all choreography, up to your fist
in my chest. We’ve done this so many times but I never remember
to close my eyes. You do it for me, an intermission with your fingers
on my face.
Hold my heart in your palms, feel it
feel it stop.
Katie Shamblin is a lesbian poet based in Louisville. Her most recent work is centered around body horror, sexuality, and intimacy.