2013/02/20

Inferno: 1

Rejoice in the Whiteness of Skin


My thighs are cold from where the coke can rested
between them as I drove. By the mailboxes
the ginger guy is staring
          again his back against my box,
meat-pie eyes, fixed on the middle distance
          not looking at me
like I expect him to.

I should have worn shoes.

I seek out shadow, walking
where the pavement is darkest, where
my skin won't burn. I'm white,
white, white. The sidewalk of my hips
untrodden by your fingertips.

I know it's summer
from the sticky pools
of ice-cream melting in children's eyes,
from the stink of burning flesh
on barbeques.

A guy walks past with a fresh tattoo:
the Southern Cross is slick
with blood and fluid, packed
in Glad Wrap like a lump of steak.

I sink my teeth into his arm.

I am so hungry.


Kia Groom (Western Australia)
First published in the anthology Breath of the Sea (Peter Cowan Writers Centre 2013)

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