lot’s wife

i am full of blinding visions

i am chock-full of first attempts—

revisions—

weighty,

symbolic

tangerines dancing—


i am the pomegranate and the apple

i am the teeth of eve on apples

i am the beauty of the apple


(i am round

ripe

ready to be plucked


i am the serpent and the temptress

i am babylon and israel)


i am pregnant with metaphor

as mary with messiah;

as judas with his master

i sell meaning for thirty shekels


i illuminate through symbols

i am sodom and gomorrah

the salt becomes my tongue

my tongue salts the pillars

lot’s wife becomes my rhyme


my words take on divinity

thrice they smote the angels

twice i ransomed syntax

once i sound the bell


(my words split hairs in heaven,

my words are kept in shells)

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