The 2River View 26.1 (Fall 2021)

Deborah Bacharach

My Inner Punk Rock Skateboarder Stands in Front of Rothko

In the crack
I exist. You’ve seen me. 
You know I am a fist.
When I refuse to be naked,
I will be put up against the wall.

If I roll the word shit
around in my mouth if I suck
on it, chew on it, I will at least not care 
it’s killing me. I wish
I could disappear into the black
marks that become the frame 
of faces that maybe if I could
keep pushing back far enough
become human. My body the only truth
my body the only way to tag 
I have lived with love.
I am plummeting.

The Quilter at 86

I stitch each shallow breath
through a bitter haze.
I will piece together Pluto’s true colors,
those triumphant shorelines of jagged ice,
when my good
heart again glistens.

When I was a child, seaswept,
Father wrestled me back from the undertow,
promised me to Water Lillies.
I lived golden then.

May the calm
across the waters bind
my edges. Against what
unnames me, Pluto, Monet,
Father remain.

Deborah Bacharach is the author of Shake and Tremor and After I Stop Lying. She has been published in journals such as The Carolina Quarterly and The Southampton Review. She is an editor, teacher and tutor in Seattle.

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