“Cruda” by Tess Burkley


 I realize my breathing is louder and heavier than a pug’s,

and I feel as small as I remember my pseudo-scientific rant,

backed by nothing but whiskey and self-importance.

I’m suddenly and agonizingly aware of the dull ache in my tail bone

Where it struck the edge of the stair

And then the next stair, and then the next.

Regrets pervade my brain,

Numerous as bar receipts and severe as my dehydration,

But are pushed aside by the relentless cognizance of my dire physical need:

I need a milk jug of water

and an IV.

My body resists movement, but my lizard-like rotating eyes notify me

That my room is strewn with evidence of last night’s abandon:

An empty plastic popsicle tube, spewing

Stale corn syrup, actively attracting ants that I won’t bother to kill.

The bra carelessly thrown,

Half on the chair, half off,

Which makes me think of that author who said

“people draped over everywhere like Dali clocks.”

I ponder, “Did Dali get drunk?”

As my right hand slothfully makes its way to my face,

Forced by the left chamber of my brain

And wipes away the crusted wine from my lips

like peeling paint, or a scab.

Compelled by thirst,

I envision divine marionette strings and pull myself to standing

Knowing full well that I won’t stay vertical

for long today.

You can find Tess Berkley on the internet and likely here on RASCAL again soon.  Aren’t submissions peachy? We can’t wait to post you again, girl. 

Photo by Ashley Merriweather.

One thought on ““Cruda” by Tess Burkley

  1. Pingback: “Grapefruits and Poetry” by Tess Burkley « RASCALmagazine

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