In place of no, my leaking mouth spills foxgloves.
Trumpets of tongued blossoms litter the locked closet.
Up to my ankles in petals, the hanged gowns close in,
mother multiplied, more–there’re always more
corseted ghosts, red-silk bodies crowd
my mouth. I would say no, please;
I would say sorry, Papa; I would never
ask for mother again, but dresses dressed
in dresses are dresses that own this garnet dark,
this mouth. These hands can’t find
the walls, only more mothers
From Prelude to Bruise. Copyright © 2014 Saeed Jones.