Augury as Anatomy of Abuse – Alix Wood
Which is worse, broken bone or torn tendon?
Fibers stretch and snap like violin bow strings.
Three-fourths of my skin is scar tissue, the other fourth a place to burrow inside
like chickadee into beech.
How long did I believe bodies to be marble?
I leaped from the pile of soil
above my head when my friend tells me to fly,
radius fracturing like cheap plastic.
How easy to rupture hollow bone.
When my friend tells me to pull down
my cotton underwear to my ankles,
I listen as she stares at my pinkness and laughs.
My nail beds a graveyard of bones, red and feathered
like an albatross filled with dark matter.
This year, we hunt for cuttlefish.
Dive into the water, deeper than trust,
and consume its fatty meat. In biology,
we slice open a pelican’s breastbone
and search through its entrails,
finding more plastic than gut.
Years later, I dig beak-first into my own skin.
Enough. I am clean. I must believe this,
as much as I believed I could fly. Birds
must jump from nests or risk being pushed.