Mating Rituals of Alligators


Touch that.

Not too far in.

Mind the shallow body.

Too much skin.

A good woman doesn’t wear that – do that.

We’re concerned.


Calvinists are to blame for fear of wildness – No, calving glaciers – The speed at which ice falls is equal to the number of unrealized orgasms between a girl and a tree.

I had a mad crush on him, and now he’s bald – Yes, he was careful with boundaries, but still, it was easy to fall into teenage delusion – His arms – His spirit – The boom of his voice – It was forbidden.  This is why I love the vanilla breath of ponderosas.

This is why I swim naked – The quick shock of abandon – The brine and burn and candied ecstasy – The sting of tentacles are the reminder you are food for a holy host of creatures (including those in desperation, those with mental defect.)

It wasn’t until I saw an alligator wave its body in a lagoon – the time his eyes pointed toward the reeds I stood between – his bellow rippling the water –  I wanted to kiss something wet in an east Arkansas swamp.

All those knees poking out – Those idle snakes dangling above as I submit to the current –  And there, tucked behind the cypress are the weathered remains of human convenience –  Trojans from Valero.

The water turns sinuous as it slips past I-40 sex traffic – past three hogtied, murdered boys – the church where my husband sang in the spirit, not in the flesh – where they prayed for Elvis – all the way to the Mississippi for the big toxic dump into the Gulf.

That dark wriggle on a paper map is a tease – A wink – Like the time he wore a button up shirt with a frayed hole in the sleeve – I wanted to place my tongue on the end of each untamed thread – Instead, I climbed the nearest magnolia and sucked on a mango pit.

It is true – The crevasse may swallow you – A river will knock you out – Mountains are unkempt cemeteries – One more broken coffee cup, and you split into pieces – The day you try grass is the day your lover installs bidets in all of your bathrooms – And your gaze locks with a conflagrant alligator – It is true – We are fingerprints of light – Hungering for strange things.

Pick up your worries.  I want to show you something.


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