Cathexis Northwest Press

© 2018 

alive; Prey
alive 

those lost moments
smell like an airport carpark
kerosene patina, painted-over arrows
not quite underground
concrete pillars
when we were travelling
before the ruptured
bitumen teeth
of our separation
came between us
splintered out the
small parts of
our past
and ate our bones
alive

i occupy a spine
and a place outside
concrete curbs and verge sides
queerness as a verb
wandering in this not-ok
this incipient insipid wrong
tastes of lettuce left
at the bottom of the fridge
could not make the words right
scrape them off my tongue
solvent truths
consume the future
husband, love of my life
i'm a lesbian

...

kerosene fires
burning the light in your eyes
alive

Prey

everything in my house
has a stale-dog smell
flea dirt and unwashed hair
dry and flaky restlessness
I pace back and forth
howl inwardly
breathless
and scratch off my own skin
let the blood get under my fingernails
red cells senseless
I am my own prey
trapped inside this settled place
prowling end to end, the walls
defenceless, rabid, bored
making wasted moments
dust and monologues
and discordant
sighs 

Lydia Trethewey is an artist and writer from Perth, Western Australia. Her work explores experiences of quiescence, daydream and non-belonging. She received a PhD in fine art from Curtin University in 2018, and currently works there as a sessional academic.