t a r a    b o s w e l l

 

 

A CHILDHOOD EXPERIMENT


&c., &c., AND HAS DECIDEDLY THE PRETTIEST LITTLE HANDS, FEET, AND ANKLES, IN LONDON









































 

 

A CHILDHOOD EXPERIMENT: Choose three colored pencils to reflect
your mood. Your teacher plays classical music. Close your eyes and draw. No peeking.
There should be all kinds of scribbling, sharp cuts on paper, large moody loops. With the
correct variables, this experiment will yield an abstract subconscious illustration of a
story someone else wrote about bare feet on the cool wood floor of [your] parentís
bedroom, the mouthburn of a popsicle, the popsicle running fast and blue down [your]
arm, the blue rivers of [your] hand breaking the air between [you] and the ceiling fan
whirr, the air between [you] and the room moving, kicking up dust from the curtains and
the bed skirt and all the other ruffles. Now, open. What do [ I ] see?

Possible answers include:

A plumtree of bruises.
A conduit of white noise.
The volume cranked on a slasher film.
A lady with worms for hair.
The mother you covet.

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&c., &c., AND HAS DECIDEDLY THE PRETTIEST LITTLE HANDS, FEET, AND ANKLES, IN LONDON

 

I've built a hammock in the black-eyed caves of the Sierra Madre and the horses have
spooked. I tell them, "But I'm writing a book!" They don't care.

Dear Espisona—They say you have no cause to labor, as you neither cook nor wear any
clothing? [sic]

Language [ ] fails us.

Note:
cricket-meal and sunflower seed
depending on the cravings of the squaw
sometimes offal

Dear Espinosa—Your daughter must have learned to waltz by some kind of intuition?
[sic]

Note:
to advance the cause of science, Julia [omit]
a butchered [animal]
undressed
industrial men
a low wind

On the trail home, I pick up a small rock along the way, which had become habit, [omit]
the mad dogs of the mountains.

Dear Espisona—I. [omit]

Only a lizard exhumed the color of red rock reminds me this is the Mother Range.
They have no word for ballroom, and I have no right to ask.

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TARA BOSWELL lives and makes art in Chicago, where she is also a Founding Curator and Program Director for The Swell, an art cooperative and performance series. Her chapbook, DON'T COME CRYING TO ME, is forthcoming from dancing girl press in 2015. She is currently working on a poetic engagement with the life and career of performer Julia Pastrana, from which these poems came.


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