Marionette Girl Replies

GAIA RAJAN

1

My dog dies on a Sunday, July's rain

a muzzle around my heart. At night I dream

about the trails behind my house where we

weaved in and out of trees, bellies

hanging & knees scabbed. This poem is

 

about life. I know. My spittooned dog. God.

In the beginning, all the world was America*

so I lie still on her tracks, wait for the talons

to sink into steel. My bones sold for a carton

of milk. My face washed ashore on this desert

 

of the most golden grain. Good citizen

with the right features, only the wrong

eyes. Wrong name. But I want to say he loved

me anyway. My dog, I mean, the one

who drowned in sand. My mother tells me

 

to follow my dog's tango, tangle with our flag

until all the poppies drop. By morning, stoplights

stuck on red & the roads splitting themselves

open for the next super bloom. Look

how quickly I learn. I promise I can be better

 

than this city’s exhaust, better than the letters

pillaging the fields, all the right ones for god

& the wrong ones for myself: dog, immigrant,

god, god I love how good you are to me.

*From Two Treatises of Government by John Locke

GAIA RAJAN lives in Andover, MA. She's the Managing Editor of The Courant and a Poetry Editor for Saffron Lit. Her work has previously appeared or is forthcoming in DIALOGIST, Up the Staircase Quarterly, Hobart, and elsewhere. She is a 2020 National Student Poet semifinalist, and her chapbook, Moth Funerals, is forthcoming from Glass Poetry Press. She hopes you have a wonderful day.

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