how this body was woodcarved

like one trains an eye
through telescope lenses on stars / planets / shimmering milkspills
like one chases tornadoes across a flat
nebraska highway
like one who pilgrimages to the same body
of water every year
tell me you’ve been following me before i was born

some kind of farmers almanac
tell me about the catalogue
tracing my arc
charcoal on fiber
a history that pre-dates prehistory

my bones
tell me how they rose

not what will be
but that i have been
tell me
these veins
mapped the way rivers map (carve) themselves

the seed of suffering
small and round
like broccoli or poppy
tell me where in this body
like a pea under a mattress

of this blood
tell me you know
where the lines were cut
tell me
the grave
of my great grandmother

tell me i can finally rest
curl into the shape of sleep
that my elbows (star points) and riverways (everything you cannot see)
may be gathered
and held for a while

how this body was woodcarved
a trojan horse
a secret vehicle of fighters
or a vehicle emptied of fighters
offering refuge
to the people of
offering refuge
for the miners
the farmers / field workers
the children in india paid pennies to mine old computers for bits of precious metal
who will most likely die at 37 from exposure to cadmium and lead

refuge for those who are sold
for the man on the sidewalk today with a scab on his forehead dull brown and the size of a peach pit
for the maquiladoras

a vehicle emptied of fighters

so that it may ferry those with or without papers across borders
back to their lovers
their children
their grandparents
no questions asked but
are you comfortable? do you need anything? can i get you something to drink?