Poem Hunter
Poems
Keep It In
JJ ( / US)

Keep It In

</>White-out words in their skins that my
teeth still hold in
spill reckless out over three dreams
of a scene painted in studies,
a series of verbs muted
for a pantomimed plea; preparing
for a pardon made out like a whisper; for omens
or evils not closed. Their hair-raising holler booms
not far behind and seems flat against
the blistering beat below, the triumphant hum
of high expectation caught drowning inside me.
what sounds I would make,
what haze I could cut—and lift—and wrap around your tiny,
weblike fingers
in a trance…
shattered but shaping
your mellow curves, stiller and softer
the rounds of fingernail that
startle my sleep, so
opaque I’d
cling to them. But not too hard. You could see
rubies
if I opened my mouth and
was caught drifting
wide awake.


never a pulse in my quivering throat,
shooting notes
sung wild and unsorry
for the smashing
and gnashing
and grinding of worries
alive when I’m standing
and faking
and—
eyes white, lips pursed—
imperceptibly fading. I am invisible unless I am asleep.

I want to wake up and tell you these things.
I keep it in,
I keep it in,
I keep it in.

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