Burger’s Daughter

This morning I opened your email, and found
the body of your daughter, her face erased

by invisible ink. I saw on paper, faint lines
that redrew her features into caricature—

the sphinx, the grandmaster, the bitch.
Cartoons invented to live in my closet,

collecting paraphrases with a hammer,
storing the closed captions of a mute.

Jars of stunted-self languish there still,
in the half light. Stacked fat slices

of summer pear. Peeled, cleft and
without mouths, they kiss up

against the glass. Inanimate, but
breathing. Listen ­­– they call out,

to no longer glisten in syrup
of burgeoning blood. Call out

to end the obligatory bob of an orb,
forever seeking a diminished pit.

You see Father,
I came to count the shards.
Shatter the shelves of your empty chest,
breathless and blinded.

Pick up what’s left of each inhuman word,
paste remnants of jagged letters
to my own bruised ribs
sculpt every defect into
splintered divine ambition
to live earth bound
a masterpiece of deliverance.

I your Burger’s daughter
watch my teeth tear flesh from stone.

Photo by Atlas Green on Unsplash

Anya Smith

Anya Smith is a passionate reader and writer of poetry from Vancouver, Canada.