Two Cannibals in a Blackout

I am a mirror image of what is inside you.
Violence and a bullseye – subliminal sacrifices
being antagonized through ticker tape and cartographs,
velvet Tourette’s and phobic of reactionaries, our fingers swell
in the exact same way when our blood pressures rise and
we sweat the same nonsense which makes our pores smell alike –
without baths our biology is evidence of inbreeding wastelands.
But you wear my perfume when you are alone because you
want to remember what coffee smells like while you’re in love.

My husband says he sees how I am exactly like you.
The more he hears, the more he talks to you, the more he knows,
the more he notices the niceties that we have overlooked –
it’s in the way we speak, a catchphrase, a gruff sigh and
an anxious need to be left alone – exigency impales our mouths
and that is why it is dangerous for us to breath the same air –
two cannibals in a blackout – a ferritin drip of the same
flaring nostril and the rotten leftovers of a person telling the same
inside joke time and time and time again because nothing is funnier
than sardonic comfort and a bowl of porridge, a sunken belly – we rub all
four eyes and blink until eyelashes loosen, we return to kaleidoscope.
How small are my hands? How cosmic, like the vowel in our names.

I press the letter N, and while you’re miles away in Hong Kong
you turn it into a song that no one else understands but me.

Which one of us has been coddled more by the other?
You leave love notes regardless of descent, and I impersonate
your voice in my head – the one that always told me “nothing is a mistake.” 

You read my mind. I say nothing – but you hear me
and it makes us questions why we use words at all,
why call and exaggerate the wobble of your knees
in comparison to flat feet and lack of sleep – tell me
repetitiously how I am not the same, but neither are you,
and it angers you to be different from the person for whom
you divided your life into two – it’s not you, it’s not me,
this isn’t us and us isn’t we and when you look in the mirror
it’s not you that you see, and my husband agrees that he doesn’t
see me – but neither of you ask how I feel about not knowing
who I am, or knowing all too well, which are the same thing.

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