Not the animals disassembled
into discardable or valuable parts.
The old ivories of no piano
unable to make that dirge sing
for me. Piece by piece,
there’s no harmony, no reckoning.
Don’t give them your science, based
on no God, take the stars, cheap
string-lights of our consolation.
Look up. The moon’s a fetus
crescented cold against all this.
From silence, accuse
the constellations, their bright braille,
and read that diversity of mythology,
fable, any tale, to say we matter. Take the stars
off the pushpins, then. Trace
them with your mortal fingers
as proof we’re one more tiny, nothing-entity.
I try to get there, but the dots don’t sync
Connect them though I try.
There’s no reckoning.
The crime? Identity? The evidence
base, destrustive, a typo, or a word
that swallows trust inside its own proclivity
to destroy what it can’t unbelieve.
Entitlement’s fur coat pulled tight
against all vulnerability.
The animals, the walking-dead.
The woman, as epidemic, as pre-existing
amenity. Something you get for free
upon check-in. The transgender satellites
smear light. Fireflies we smash just to write
our own names with their bodies.
Ariana-Sophia Kartsonis, author of the poetry collections Intaglio and The Rub and the chapbook Aloha Vaudeville Doll, works at Columbus College of Art & Design where she serves as faculty advisor for Botticelli Magazine.
Inspiration: These seven words touch so many other words as they are singled out for erasure. I wanted to create a rhythm of reckoning in their use and for their banishment. I wanted that reckoning for every vulnerable being that suffers anew under the dim light of now.