pesbo since 2005.

Pearl Pirie’s book lists, interviews, event write-ups, poems and more.

Your photo will be taken

your photo will be taken

in the grey government waiting room of stifled coughs,
not even a cream-faced clock to encourage
conversation’s spark. wincing squawk of bottoms
shift on black vinyl seats, watch the numbers A119,
C257, A220, A221, A222, C258, A223 as yours
draws near they throw in a F103 to make it clear who
is in charge. A sneeze arches over the rows of seats, pink
purple and burnt sienna paisley, decorated victorian lace hem,
the flu loosed, a ying yang unhinged, swung clear floating
as a quarter moon unmoored, pulling an influence over where
the white of eyes don’t look, nothing to be done but wait
for your number to come up. The black-haired cherub,
tongue stuck out in concentration, is held in the eyes
of his father, locust position on the seat, legs twitching
til he flings himself into the air, running stiff kneed
head tick-tocking as he runs figure eights around columns
his open laughing mouth the most color in the room.

laid on the table bare

fingers sink into warmed butter of skin
back soft as lips were, before the needy
pressing of whey of way of curdling bit-back
gasps, the tremor of body remembering
coming into itself through another when
holy shrouds and fogs fell away
and there was nakedness in the pupils
bedroom eyes giving way to anywhere
but now eyes. hardness like an exoskeleton
muscles seized and structure understood
by hands taking leave of niceties like mind
or heart. only matter matters. afterwards
soft exploration, ear hooked on ear,
playing heads back and forth
shapes, oddly distinct yet integral