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Ceremonial

Eduardo C. Corral on

Published in Poem Of The Day

Delirious,
touch-starved,
I pinch a mole
on my skin, pull it
off, like a bead-
I pinch & pull until
I am holding
a black rosary. Prayer
will not cool
my fever.
Prayer will not
melt my belly fat,
will not thin
my thighs.

A copper-
faced man once
called me beautiful.
Stupid,
stupid man.
I am obese. I am
worthless.
I can still feel
his thumb-
warm,
burled-moving
in my mouth.
His thumbnail
a flake

of sugar
he would not
allow me to swallow.
Desperate
for the sting of snow
on my skin,
rosary
tight in my fist,
I walk into
a closet, crawl
into a wedding dress.
Oh Lord,
here I am.



About this poem
"I'm having a hard time writing poems that surprise and challenge me in the wake of my first book. Most of my drafts read like rehashed older work. I'm waiting for a snippet of language or an image to lead me into new terrain. I know it will happen. I have to be patient. 'Ceremonial' is one of the few poems that have escaped my notebooks. It's a poem that unsettles me. I often wish I'd never written it. The hurt that triggered the language still pulses inside me."
- Eduardo C. Corral

About Eduardo C. Corral
Eduardo C. Corral is the author of "Slow Lightning" (Yale University Press, 2012). He teaches in the low-residency M.F.A. program at Pacific University and is the writer-in-residence at North Carolina State University.

***
The Academy of American Poets is a nonprofit, mission-driven organization, whose aim is to make poetry available to a wider audience. Email The Academy at poem-a-day[at]poets.org.


(c) 2015 Eduardo C. Corral. Originally published by the Academy of American Poets, www.poets.org. Distributed by King Features Syndicate



 

 

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