Western Voices: Mari Deweese


Bio:
Mari Deweese lives outside of Memphis, and dreams of a place with an actual autumn. Her first book, Kinky Keeps the House Clean, was published by Nixes Mate Books in 2017, and her next collection of poetry will drop from the gibbet in fall 2019.


Aldonza

Surprises lurk
in all these doorways.
Which word 
is the right name?
Logos, sweetness,
meridian, morte,
windmill, sloes-

will any of these release me?

A filthy rag symbolizes
a filthy rag,
and dirty water tastes like shit.

If my hate for you
were half as heavy
as all my hate for me
you'd never rise.


Promise Me You'll Stain My Skin with Yours


More words in more tongues
exist in the mouth of relativity
than all the tongues that ever
uttered them.
They span outward
like Hopkins' shook
foil, flaming, brightening,
destroying.
When will we learn
the only lesson of permanence,
the importance of ephemeral?

And these words-
these scratchings on the surface-
and *these* words-
these effusive vibrations-
vanish from memory
as they never do from fabric
galactic: they are
the dark matter

the only matter.


Lance


Ergo
The aspens
Shive
r, reeling from a dusk
too humid in nature
for this season. Appetency
lengthens in the shadows
who ripple down the stone
the singing stone
burgeons in ecstasy
of thwartation. Courtly love
is less flirtatious than
curious: MY WEB FLIES WIDE.
Ergo
you are my mirror. The river,
The womb, the warrior,
the curse. I do not exist, but you,
Sun-kissed night, will rise
beyond the prows of all this
crusty understanding
and know my name
if it is the only gift
that I can give you.
Ergo
The wheel spins, the joints
Stretch, and we break
our own bread dipped
in our own vintage for
absolution, exploration, communion
and the three spirits
that hold us in contempt
until the polarity of chivalry
and degeneration slip inside
each other and release seed
to reach two-thirds synthesis
before a spontaneous abortion
in a gibbous phase.
Ergo
The falcon flies towards the east;
The dove flies south;
The moth in the window;
The wax on the casement,
Dripping. Do not let me in.

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