listen: to give attention to one’s sound
If sounds are only vibrations how are they stuck
inside my head &
why are they telling me how to
unmake my body?
warning me to kneel & pray as though the grace
of the world hangs from my teeth.
The vibrations tell me: my body is condemned—
I pretend like I have an underbite
to resist this instruction
but the voices persist—
my jaw aches.
I poke at my belly button trying to feel
where I came from. I trace my collarbone
trying to understand my slender bone structure.
I look at my hips and sigh
I wish I could
in a stranger’s spit.
Julia Rose Merante is a senior English (creative writing) major at SUNY Geneseo. She studies poetry and has two minors: biology and human development. You can find her work featured in Equinox, 30 North, and Glass Mountain Literary Magazine. Next year, Julia plans to attend law school to use her communication skills in forever righting wrongs. She wants to keep telling stories, learning new words, and watching crime movies with her mom.