Self-Portrait as One-Woman Game of Telephone


I started a rumor in myself, a l’oeil de trompe
a trickling of romp and rook, and it took. 

And it took. High-tided and I’ll-not-tell; lie-lined, 
frill-spiked, like a tulip you pay for with your life. 

And it went sour. It went tower-felled, and cowered. 
Ah, anchor-seed or weed. Indeed, I dialed again. 

I started a rumor in myself, a too-tumor in myself, 
a blur-spore, something to abhor and store like summer-jars 

of strawberries suspended in their gel. And dropped: 
a flotsam-rush of shards and pulp-red. Or instead, a drooped 

fruit, an unreadable bulk embittered with its mold. Moreover, 
something old, something unfresh: a mush text, 

an unmouthed hex. The canard within is rivet-flexed, 
with a downweight like lard. I lick it, canned and tart, 

this tittle-tattle, this tender preserve. It has flavor in the root
and the receiver circulates, inspissates, wild with turns and scorn. 

I couldn’t bear the death of its dice, its delicate flips, its flight. 
Tootle-loo! This is too true; stay still while I untell you.