"Scorpions" by Chris Fox

After writing all night, I awoke
to find scorpions in the shoes of my sentences.
So I went barefoot.

Later, the scorpions became
words, almost--
phonetic with exoskeleton,
grasping and pinching,
stinging at the world with interrogatives.

Later still, scorpions and shoes became
sentences about scorpions, shoes
and sentences.

It's hard to write with pincers,
hard to type
with shoes on the feet of my hands,
hard to love you the way I do
when you keep mistaking the shape of my body in profile
for a rhetorical question
and I desperately need
your answer.

originally published in Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet No. 16, reprinted with permission of the author

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