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This is Manifest


What I needed to survive was, currents
moving over my body.
Also, bourbon.
Saw a light through the trees:
serum? Lantern?
Baby, I said to the man kneeling
between my legs, there are kit foxes out there
and they hum when they learn a new thing
like ledges or stream-fording.
For years my soul was little more than an embassy.
I was lush, and then lush, and then more lush.
In all of my opening, who had I actually saved?
I was no one's bodhisattva. And so
I removed my body from the systems.
Walked the hills by night.
My blisters filled with sticky fluid.
A swan made a freakishness of its neck.
I was a woman of such secret knowledge
as you may think mad.
I don't know why, when we die,
all our skulls aren't jeweled.
Sometimes I was so enamored of sky
I felt my milk might come in.


Kerri Webster

The Trailhead
Wesleyan University Press


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