I saw a Butoh dancer once
snap her back in mid-step
jerk her neck to the side
it was surreal
but part of the dance.
My spine is an old witch’s crooked cane.
I am afraid that I might lean too far and
like a leather belt, crack–
vertebrae will fray,
two dangling ropes
hovering behind my rib cage
pinned up only by the mass of blood
tissue insulating the bones
which are ready to drop, tired
under the pressure of
The Butoh music tingles;
the dancer collects herself from the floor.
When Eve was cast from Eden
the garden excreted her.
New fingernails fragile like shale
grappled the dirt. Her bones
snapped backward hitting embedded tree roots.
She dragged her breasts
over wet leaves and sharp stems.
Once familiar weeds
that never touched too close before
now scraped like needles. A raging fire at her feet.
She cared for Adam’s old, rusty body.
“But it was all Eve’s fault,” the men wrote.
I am the fruit. I am
the woman. And sometimes I am the serpent.
“Where it was all red,” the children sang.
Sometimes I will spit on the dirt I’ve been tilling
and walk away. Out of the garden
where Eve was once gold.