A FIELD GUIDE TO THE WILDFLOWERS IN ME
Alpine Gold Hulsea algida
DESCRIPTION: One and one half to two inches wide, numerous yellow rays emanating from the flower, looks like the sun in her hair. Smells like fresh laundry. Blooms with the arrival of butterflies in the stomach. Has an even number of petals, will always end on “she loves me not.”
DISTRIBUTION: Grows in the warmest part of my rib cage, or wherever first loves are kept.
Red Columbine Aqilegia formosa var. truncata
[formosa- beautiful] [truncata- ends abruptly]
DESCRIPTION: Blooms one week in May, when the air is sticky. Petals are a deep red, a blush on freckled cheeks. Refuses to bloom in the same room as me, refuses to grow in my palms.
DISTRIBUTION: Grows along streams and briefly my lips, grows anywhere she has touched me.
Death Camas Zigadenus venenosus
[venenosus- very poisonous]
DESCRIPTION: Flowers are whitish, quarter inch in width, and cold to touch. Leaves are rough, like fingernails digging into skin. Named for the fatal results of eating the bulb, named after her poison.
DISTRIBUTION: Grows between my teeth, burning my throat, grows along the soft spot in my heel.
Harlequin Lupine Lupinus stiversii
DESCRIPTION: Purple and yellow blossoms, leaves are vaguely reminiscent of teeth. Seeds are poisonous if eaten. Flowers look as if they are wearing a mask. Death but with a more beautiful name.
DISTRIBUTION: Grows in the soft parts of my flesh, my open wounds.
Bleeding Hearts Dicentra formosa
[formosa- see above]
DESCRIPTION: Flowers are rose-purple to whitish, or the color of a fresh bruise. If observed long enough, flowers will actually bleed.
DISTRIBUTION: Grows between the fifth and sixth ribs.
Spreading Phlox Phlox diffusa
[Phlox- flame] [diffusa- spreading]
DESCRIPTION: Flowers are one half inch wide, pink or lilac or the color of an inferno. Sharply pointed leaves. When touched, feels like love, has been know to burn down cities. Feels a little like her name in my mouth.
DISTRIBUTION: Starts in the fingertips, spreads rapidly. Leaves the body in ashes, leaves the body aching for more.
The most terrifying thing you can be in this world is a woman who both loves her own body and rejects the idea of hating the bodies of others. In one bold step you have eliminated society’s ability to control you; and a woman with her own will is capable of, literally, anything.
Jesse Parent - “To the Boys Who May One Day Date My Daughter”
"If you break her heart, I will hear it snap with the ear I pressed against her mother’s belly."
From the Coaches Slam at CUPSI 2014. This performance has the longest sustained break for applause we’ve ever seen a poet have to take.
"Hey, you infinite being of celestial light, I think I wanna spend the rest of my life tasting your tonsils, whaddaya say?"
don’t bleed for someone whose heart doesn’t beat your name
don’t bleed for anyone