When you expand your body,
breathe in closing like a folded chair.
Center the weight, the body will not collapse.
This body will not ache or reign anymore.
This body will arrive: stone, tree, magma,
or in-between parts of lifelines
will finally know that your father
was nothing more than a sapling,
carved from the cave of grandmother’s mouth,
rubbed like salve on your wounded membrane.
When your Aspen Groves quake and cyst,
your enemy of self cycles through you again.
There is a face you’ll find there,
in the root of the oak by the yellow house,
in the shine of the metal on the front porch,
in the halo of a fence post as the sun sinks
into barren Nebraska, don’t forget to eat
with your canines sharpened by the wind.
Stephanie Michele is a graduate from the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics MFA program at Naropa University. She is a multidisciplinary artist, writer, performer, and recycling enthusiast. You can read her most recent work in GASHER, in The Wisdom Body Collective chapbook, and at Apo-Press. She is a co-founder of Tiny Spoon Lit Mag. Find her on Instagram at @shinesunshine_