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War Relics

Qiana Towns


In a house divided even the insects have to choose sides.
The roaches know three things:

One: The cast iron skillet’s off limits.
Two: Women call out to God even when they’re fucking angry.
Three: If the world enters the room, hide the children from light.


In Korea, the messmen kept their dicks cupped
in their palms as they slept. They peeled back
the foreskin before dawn in anticipation.


In this house we tap out our secrets
on flesh.

One tap to the age line tells time of its wastings.
A fingernail to each palm means it is well.
Three fists to the gut mean infinity.

This is the sign language of sin;
this is how we figure the women.

Qiana Towns

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