#girl stuff | Lysbeth Em Benkert

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Lysbeth Em Benkert is a long-term transplant to the northern midwest of the U.S. where she teaches writing, rhetoric, and literature. Her work has appeared in Pasque PetalsOne Sentence Poems, and will soon show up in Rogue Agent, and the 2018 Scurfpea Press Anthology.




 It’s not about tears

I’m thinking about ducks –
about bobbing placidly above,
about little yellow feet frantically paddling below.

I’m thinking about humming birds –
about the perfect shimmer of iridescence,
about the whirring blur of wings surrounding.

I’m thinking about millipedes –
about gliding smoothly through the leaves,
about ceaseless undulations underneath.

I’m thinking about what I can hook this onto –
about casting my line,
snagging a thought and reeling it in.

about rainbow scales,
accusing eyes,
a spiny tail.

I want to devour it.

I want to swallow each flashing bright phoneme,
relish each slippery edge,
every caustic remark.

I want to feel it catch in my throat,
burn its way down,
then heave itself back up

so I can swallow it once more

and make it part of me.
but the rule is strictly catch and release.

I’m thinking about houses –
about stoic dark windows.

I’m thinking about skaters cutting across the winter lake
about skin drawn taut over arteries
about smiles.