Post Road Magazine #1

Black Lemons + The Sacrifice

Kathy Nilsson
Black Lemons

In the desert, sun
is a high bludgeon
I emerge to the small knucklebones

in cotton, the luff of gowns
a confection of dark men
lean on a rail

the disproportion between me
and the space I inhabit
has infinite repetition—

there is life
my date of birth is a good shower after which
an orchid is found in the reed

oleander, cassia, black lemons
are not meant to last,
they are drawers of gold

my bed carved from think trunks
a rosewood cathedral,
glows like shrimp in the sun

my milk carries a trace of the local
grazing, it is salty
and foams in a bowl.

The Sacrifice
I am going off the beaten path
like the pig in her mysteries

injuring the corn
and also being hung

in the great halls of meat and fish.
The sun will appear

with the violence of a rose
and in the midst of this

mystery all of us, under fire-
red fingers, skulls

crushed, the walls
coming down like water

no complications
except the very soft head

of a newborn,
rare as an orchid,

a vegetable wonder
that I fondled

with hands
that were now just thumbs.

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