POETRY – 5 Poems by Loren Kleinmann

The Heart, a Lost Child

Don’t touch. Don’t touch. Leave the cat in the well. Pull the garbage out of her belly. Throw her in. Throw her in the womb where the worm crawls. The milk is a strand of hair. The walk is intestinal. Slowly. We walk slowly to the store. Condoms and cigarettes. We talk. The talking gets us down. You go down on me in the night with my eyes closed. Down in the well. Your heart is a lost child in a field. The night is a hole in my chest. You walk me down to the shore of an overarching vessel. We ride in the night. We walk on water, and the water is gold. The teeth, rotted yellow. Worms, dirt, light and tears. My chest is a tavern with a light inside. He licks my wrist. I yelp. I pant. I want him inside of me. Forever. And again. My dirty fingers pick at his navel. Now. Come here. Pull the twigs out of my hair. Put me down. Split the peel from the orange. I like it better. Say yes. Say yes. Swim in the crease of my eye. Now. Now.

It’s Cold Out There

No. No. I will not go outside and listen to the wolves tear at the moon. It’s just that I’m alone. It’s just that you make me feel so alone. You know. It’s not an achievement to be that pretty, you say. It’s a bunch of glock and glick and it’s cold out there. Look at my thighs. Look at the scratches and stretch marks. Look at the skin pulled back from my fingers. And you lick the marks; you eat them out with a fork and knife. I’ve already forgotten what it’s like to be loved; what it’s like to be. Let’s sit down in front of the TV and nibble at our skin. Let’s sit here and stare into the deepness of our eyes. And then we’ll go outside and eat the cheese from the mice’s hands.

He Kept Me

There once was a boy from Nantucket who loved me under the shade of a peach tree. He kept me cool with his tongue between my hips. He led me into the fields and held my face down against the ground. He screwed me while I lay on my side and kissed the freckles on my shoulders. When I came he smiled so hard it wrapped around his face and settled at the back of his head. He was young and old. He was null and void. He was built on abstractions and expectations. I wanted him to love me forever. I wanted him to stay to the end and die a little with me under the peach tree, under the dirt, under the roots, to the core of the earth, to the fiery pits of prehistoric volcanoes. Kill me. Kill me. Kill me with your love.

Some 15 Miles East of Pittsburgh
For the children of the Franklin Regional High School stabbing

The yellow tape blows in the wind. The trees won’t let you pass. Light turns you into a pumpkin, exposes you to the faces of the dead. The children’s stabbed backs sprout flowers. Don’t go there. Don’t try to wrestle the tape down, or reach at it. Avoid striking a match near gasoline, near crying mothers. Let the bones shatter on the floor of the school. The children grip a string and stitch their gashes together. You can hear their breathing, a rustle of a skirt, the glow of the big dipper. A gasp. A new moon. A seed. A bean sprout.

Sneak Away

My head rolls down my shoulders like a cat. It hisses and crawls. My head laughs at me from the depths of my stomach. It’s heavy, like a brick. My head runs off into a field of grass, burnt up from the sun and lonely. It’s a lost head on top of an ant hill, worried without the rest of my body. My shoulders are light and my arms pour milk and make eggs. My chest is laughing at my ankles. My ankles are sad because they will never be close to the heart. The head is gone, hiding under a chicken in a barn. It rolls over gravels and stones. It’s in the clouds now. It’s asleep in a tree and dreams of the body tapping its chin.

Loren Kleinmann’s poetry has appeared in journals such as Drunken Boat, Nimrod, Wilderness House Literary Review, Paterson Literary Review, Narrative Northeast and Journal of New Jersey Poets. Her interviews and reviews have appeared in IndieReader, USA Today, and The Huffington Post. She is the author of Flamenco Sketches and Indie Authors Naked, which was an Amazon Top 100 Bestseller in Journalism in the UK and USA. Her second poetry collection The Dark Cave Between My Ribs, released March 2014 (Winter Goose Publishing), was an Amazon Bestseller in Women’s Poetry. She was the recipient of the Spire Press Poetry Prize (2003), was a 2000 and 2003 Pushcart Prize nominee, and was a 2004 Nimrod/Pablo Neruda Prize finalist for poetry. She runs a blog on The Huffington Post and her third poetry collection, Breakable Things was released in March 2015.