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There is an Island in My Head

There is an island in my head
Mei Kawagoe

There is an island in my head.
Your thyroid is the butterfly – with the broken wings and the splayed spine.
It lives in my throat. It’s so alive.
Tell it to still yet it won’t. Thrums at the paper of skin – the pretence of security.
But love its electric spasms, and it’ll love you.

I make beautiful things.
Here, where they can’t reach us. The seas will hold us.
Boneless fingers breaking for air, as they lift your body, smooth your hair.
My island is the pacemaker, tucked in beneath my little finger.
My island is home.

I visit my island.
My island visits me.
The walls shake. Hurricanes.
Summer storms that come to play.
They cradle my neck. Murmur silly things.
Unfurl your ears and eat your tears. It’ll be fine, little one.

If you wanted pears, tart, soft – grotesque in their scent. Then you would come.
Still, my island and me never get lonely. We, the people, the witches in the estuary.
I festoon it with medallions, ribbons, lions.
We roar, quietly.

But not now.
Not now.
Now I am in a trolley; a cot; a bed; a hearse.
This is the first time one of the big ones run.
I mind my Ps and Qs, but I mind all of them.

There is an island in my head.
There is an island in my head.

Cover your minuscule madnesses!
Authority is the ringmaster.
I am the child.
We fight.
Wrestle with shadows. They lace up the walls, hallucinatory.
The undoing of me.

Two can’t win.
At my funeral – or yours, you go first –
Will they sing?

I am the child.
I am the child.
I am the island.