Stephanie Kaylor

Lodging by Stephanie Kaylor

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lodging

by 

Stephanie Kaylor

 

the other world rewards me

with memories

blank eternally

as a photograph,

shapes and colors

 

the remnants of their explosion

out of context

 

at land

there was a flock of starlings,

I could not tell you anymore,

 

not even if the creatures,

breathing,

surrounded me again, here,

 

now

I would only see a monochrome

grouping, I would only see

the whole

 

what more could you see

when one of us breaks

 

or cloaks herself in new silks?

the great changeover armed itself

in nothing but the delusion

that you were always master

and these are all your tools

 

far-sighted

I see myself at your side, eye

-to-eye, inside which is still a tincture

of the time before you and I

 

in my eye too

was the house, the glorious

overthrow of the ledger

the markings of our losses

 

I never saw

the inside but as spectator

I knew, with all the windows

leading to all the rooms

that I could house them together

there were no padlocks

here nor a single car

not a telephone wire, a time

or a name or a face misplaced.

 

Poetic Statement: Let me mourn. Let me dream. Let me see you not as how you present yourself to be but how I envisage. Let me write my story, let me turn the pages, let me bridge subject and object with my own brand of ink. It isn’t white ink, ink of life, the glorified rape of the canon, sowing its seed in anyone’s lap. It’s the red ink, the ink that transcends the permanence of the whole thing and rewrites, retells, the nagging voice in the background your history sought to cut out. It’s the ink that seeks not to hide glitches but to bring them to the center light.

 

Bio: Stephanie Kaylor is based in upstate New York where she is completing a MA in Women’s, Gender & Sexuality Studies. She is also a current MA student at European Graduate school, concentrating in narrative structure and desire. Though her musings are not political in content, she is an ardent supporter of activist causes, including sex workers’ rights and prison abolition.

 

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On Being an Angel by Stephanie Kaylor

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On Being An Angel

by

Stephanie Kaylor

 

“Be wary.” Your fears I read like braille, goose bump code on a body I knew long before I first reached yours. Even the endless may have a beginning, a split second we will never understand. Where then would you hide?

 

Where are the black crows tonight, the broken glass, the omens? I blink once to clear my eyes.

 

Thermoluminescence dating, the determination of the time elapsed since a material last saw the sun; how I know I love you, the moonlight bather who will not pose as savior in my battle scene or his own.

 

(though I had the dream again last night, the house was burning brightly, the dinner party uninterrupted as the butler fanned the flames. I was the only one who ran out and you held me back as I stood naked on the warehouse roof, from a salted sea breeze beckoning me to fly).

 

He said there would be something else, some whiskey-breathed revelation. I like him like this, when he doesn’t say a word and I can fall into the soft-lipped void, and I fall proudly in the new fragility he has helped me craft to help me break. 

 

The 2:58 am clawing of a telephone like a strangers back, like complacency when the double speaks to herself and I, the total I, the unsure shape shifter. My inner lives crave completion: my searching a transfixation; my avoidance, divination. I know why the telephone does not ring. 

 

I will borrow his utensils. The teeth, the feet, the words collected like medallions. They will be dirtied by my touch but I shall cleanse them with the same.

 

(was I ever in your words? Was I a ghost, a spool of yarn unraveled, a baby’s skull?)

 

I am not frightened of the things you say but the things that shrivel before they reach your tongue, how they coexist.

Bachelorette by Stephanie Kaylor

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Bachelorette

 by

Stephanie Kaylor

1. I never much cared for hosting parties.

Always, it seemed, in the morning there’d be broken glass.

 

2. I’d crack abstractions into the glass until I could recognize myself, a hundred eyes searching back at me for what, they did not know.

 

3. I offered a bandage to a broken mankind.

I forgot the antiseptics, said I’d be back within the hour.

 

4. Once a man took me to the river.

We could only stare at it through all the barbed wires and their proclamations: turn around, there’s enough of a mess for you to swim in there.

I thought myself Bathsheba, but I couldn’t even dip my feet.

 

5. I thought myself an enlightened convict but they wouldn’t give back the key. “We said it would only be on my conditions,” but he’s gone and he can’t hear, and he didn’t say he’s coming back.

 

6. Blissfully illiterate, he never read my notes.

He’d fold them into origami, flowing into another world on the breathe of every kiss.

 

7. In the corner I recalled my grandmother’s warning like a prayer.

Do not heed the sun. The moonlit reveries & their daytime retrieval is the only way to stay unburned.

 

8. The reminiscent complex,

the sugar-titted histories overflowed from my nursing bottle every time I tried to heat it up.

 

9. The mattress is grey.

Not grey in indistinguishable soot, but the led of pencil etchings we could dream then erase. I like to lie here with you at my side.

 

Bio: Stephanie Kaylor is an Albany-based daydreamer currently working enrolled in two graduate programs: an MA in Media Philosophy at European Graduate School, and an MA in Women’s Studies at the University at Albany. She is a staunch advocate of ecriture feminine, but won’t shy from admitting to being seduced by the female beats. Stephanie is also currently working with Reginald Lewis, an incarcerated writer whose information can be found at facebook.com/reginaldsinclairlewis.