Follow my voice followmy voice I follow your voiceinto the malignant trousseauinto poetry I followthe rabble the voicesthe birthmark on your torso:a puncture wounda sign for syreI don't want the butterfliesto die in the rabbleso I take my headphones offso I take my rabbled bodytill riddarsporrar till syrenertill den råttiga diktenabout my eyelids mina ögonlockar I am translating ittill mina döttrar inthe color of oxidized metalyou are the color of stainglass window I am the colorred where are you hidingwhere are your punctured lungsmy beautiful pen inlaidwith bird bone is what I useto write as I think to myselfI think to my daughterdet står en pöbel pa min trappI think to my daughterdom har tagit fotografierav tomma plast kassaroch andra krigsgrejer frånsommaren props formy ratted-out body soundlike the morning after the riotit should be snowingI can't hear a wordI'm cutting flowers for the riotFlickorna are in thick of it they trashtheir cuties while the cops do thatthing with torsos and I have a vision of ratsin the hallucination I look like en oskuldwhen I get my killability on for the rabbleI have a femur I have a pain in my ankleI must have been running through the streetsagain pollen is on my skin and inmy beautiful long hair I have solenas a mother I sing-song for the policesnedsträck the rabble wants to possess mebut the girls they want to killme with their candy how can I see ittheir mouths are closedare they in berlin I'm in stockholmit smells like urine on this street becauseI'm wealthy snedsträck I refuse to stealthis painting the teenagers are whistlingin the street how do they knowI'm with them how do they knowI'm watching a movie about innocenceit's a silent movie men änglarna pratarin captions speak in numbersthrough the radio the interrogatorswear rubber gloves but they can'tgo through mirror they can't go throughthey don't understand poetrytheir pictures are already on a pop musictime is out of whack there's no placein heaven for you mina vackra poeterbut the underground is full of heavenwe will never win anythingthe poodle is yapping in the street it mustbe the devil will you ever come back noFlowers for the rabbleand I'm scared of being infectedin the lilacs and the infection inthe lilacs will return me tosummer to the movie screenwhere I was bornto photograph bodies inbutcher shops poodles soto speak in the faustsick afterparty I'm talking ruinswith the devil you have to bea foreigner to make art outof other people's ruinshe tells me you can't belongto ruins because you'rebleeding from the foreheadamazingly he's right but I sayI can belong to anywhere I cantake a photographeven if that makes me the killerbut then I see my photo of the deadgirl and she has photographedmy eyes I will bleedlonger in the poem ofthe afterworld now that I belongto the afterparty her lungsbelong to the environmentshe has been kissed by itmercury I have been kissedtoo I have been told to slashthe diorama I won'tI'm not as clean as that I carrythe violent leaf in my mouth
Copyright © 2021 by Johannes Göransson.
All rights reserved.
Reproduced by Poetry Daily with permission.
Johannes Göransson is the author of eight books of poetry and criticism and two forthcoming books—Summer and The New Quarantine (a collaboration with Sara Tuss Efrik). He is the translator of several books of poetry, including most recently Eva Kristina Olsson’s The Angelgreen Sacrament. He is an associate professor in the English Department at the University of Notre Dame and—together with Joyelle McSweeney, Kate Hedeen and Paul Cunningham—edits Action Books.
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