Kateri Menominee, Chippewa.
I am told my body is the atlas
inside the rivers that run through
the geography of my hands.
But, I have heard different.
We went to Starbuck’s where
you worked, and while I drank
my coffee, you poured alchemy
in my cup, a cap full of
You explained to me how the earth
is rotating around the bend of my heart,
up through the opening in my chest cavity,
A place where my clots are like stars
that fill the constellations in my wrist,
where there is a waterfall of blood
pulling the planets to rotation.
You told me to create words from alloy,
to copper for my voice. That these words
will rise and fall in and out of the strands
of my hair only to purge stomach, to open
this garden where it will shape flowers
carved into the curl of my back.*
by Kateri Menominee