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Sunday, June 12, 2011

Midnight Terrain

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Here is the workman leather of your sole,
here is the shining grape, the toe,
here the leg,
the knee, the mountain,
slippery upper gorge,
here the holder of the belly, sweetlined center radiating all juice,
breast, thick and heavy, spigot and arch,
underbelly of chin here,
the North, the South of your face,
your rumbling lip,
half-mast nose,
starving ears,
the high bones,
the wall, built-up chain of the eye,
    only visible window,

                    and what I harvest -    

                         that horse, that snail, that thousand inner mouths chewing on my dust,
            how you hold me in and crumple,
            the blood shoveling through the pipes,
                     the bursting bursting moan of teakettle.










 Ching-In Chen is the author of The Heart's Traffic and a Kundiman and Lambda Fellow and part of the Macondo and Voices of Our Nations Arts Foundation writing communities.  “Midnight Terrain” is reprinted with permission of Red Hen Press.  The formatting of this poem may be altered from the original due to the online format of this publication.