Poetry 2013 / Volume 44

Dandelion Sugar — Ariana Uding

It’s Thursday, my mascara smells
like alcohol, something strong
and boozy like, 12 dollar fifth of gin
and gluey eyes,
the stranger at the bar leans across the table
and I put a fork in his hand and then
read an article that says
toss if smell changes
becomes a mantra
that milk smells, toss it
do laundry or toss it
fish smells fishy, time to toss it
my mascara smells like alcohol
my eyes smell like alcohol
my coat smells like alcohol

James causes fights at his local bar so
he is not invited and
Cary Grant dies of a hemorrhage so
I wear a red dress to his funeral and
we take shots in the back seat because
whiskey breath makes it
easier to breathe fire.

It’s probably time to toss our eyes,
we start to smell and stomp around.
When we fall, we shake the walls and our
downstairs neighbor puts in a complaint
to the landlord
and we say sir, have a drink
or at least smell the mascara
maybe with a little diffusion,
you’ll feel it in your cells.
He asks if I mean osmosis,
I say no,
that’s water.

When I die I want tiger lilies,
that hide beneath my coat to leave
beside me, a cadaver
just pay for your own ambulance
and they’ll be slicing you in no time,
they’ll consider lotuses and
Lily of the valley,
but remind them that Lily of the valley is
the flower of May
and I’m a Libra.

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