Solid Quarter

Visit Trembling Pillow Press for poetry books, broadsides, chapbooks, and Solid Quarter Magazine.

Visit New Orleans Poetry Fest for the annual 4 day poetry festival directed by Bill Lavender and Megan Burns.

Megan Burns' Poeticsofbone&city project on Tumblr

Saturday, August 25, 2018

Straight No Chaser


no one will tell you & how could they anyway, but still you'll feel deceived
no one says, one morning at 41 you'll wake up and your first thought
a memory from 15, and maybe it's because your daughter is 15

or were you 16, doesn't matter except            funny
how time exists but doesn't, the point             really being
what did you know --not much about life or other people

the sharp slap of days hurled across your body
that would later be called "refrain" and you
get so drunk one night, someone's boyfriend rapes you
in a back bedroom, you don't remember anything

it's true that you were too drunk to say no, but that's not it
it's three years later when another boy who was there says
over the phone, it was a bet & that's when you understand

the value of your body in a house of boys you called friend
and here is the part no one knows, the deepest secret you keep,
is i fucking won: you bet against my life & you, one of you ended
up dead and you, a string of jail terms, addiction and misery.

you never got out of that place where we strained to grow
broken shipped island of lost toys & i fucking escaped b/c i bet. i bet. i bet
i can survive anything. you'll tell yourself next to the body
of your 8 year old daughter and your dog as the sun rises again over new orleans.

Monday, August 06, 2018

what kind of person are you

what kind of person are you

empty or is that the way fullness feels to you
soft landing place where i lay my head
or pushing me out kind of person
do you say one thing and think another
tongue sharp, knife embrace
slipped in while i look into your eyes
what are you made of
the cruelty of other lovers

dripping from your hands
the ones you put around my throat
gently you say, let me be inside you
long enough to default back to panic
where there is light
what are you made of

the sound of what others have said
when i speak can you hear me

when i fall, i fall for human touch

the graze of your palm down my forearm
when you say soft and i think
about the hardness i’ve learned under men’s hands
how to survive when you grab me
by the back of the head

will you force me to my knees
out of love or will you not even see me
a warm mouth & my heart nameless
what of the little abuses that cut
a person down to nothing

when i say it is my fault
it’s because i want to own it
even if it’s not mine
this rented entwine costs me
i want it to spill out whole

this way i can reach you
like i could say don’t hurt me
& instead of responding

you just wouldn’t