He used to bring me into the bedroom
He knew I liked to talk and
that my mother and grandmother were
terrible listeners and so he knew
all I wanted was an ear.
And so he’d let me talk
and even better let me ask questions.
What’s that for?mmm
Why do you have those cages?
Do you like the white bird best?
Why do you pick up the turtles up off the high way?
He says he likes to help the broken things.
I’m happy to feel special.
I’m happy to have someone to listen.
And so when he smiles and tells me that kisses
make breasts grow bigger.
I think of myself as a turtle on the road.
When he undresses as I sleep and makes
enough noise to stir me,
I pretend I’m white bird.
When he lays his face,
on the sheets that cover
the space my grandmother tells me
make Jesus cry,
I crawl into a quiet cagemmm
and let him
breathe me in.