Three Poems By Becky Nicole James

Absence

One night away, the seams of my soul split
and spill these silver threads for you to catch,
to weave around my eyes, a potion knit—
unclasping icy arms—a oiled latch
to hold the locket of my gaze and weld
two sterling souls engraved with dreamer’s eyes.
Dip fingertips into my mind; unshelled,
untied, unlaced, and wholly wonder-wise.
Oh, swiftly sweep me into starlit seas.  Exalt;
your eyes, the worn green glass and watered stones
aglow in ardor's water-cobweb waltz
which captures sky and marrows hollow bones.
Times eats my fantasy and your ideals.
So break Time’s teeth; wedge kisses in his wheels.
Anaïs Nin

I couldn’t be Anaïs Nin—
In love with love and lies again.
I wouldn’t call it quite a sin
To never end—always begin.

In love with love and lies again.
Call it karma, call it zen
To never end—always begin.
I couldn’t have so many men.

Call it karma, call it zen:
The instincts of a mother hen.
I couldn’t have so many men
(Especially not my next-of-kin).

The instincts of that mother hen!
I can’t accept a crowded den
(With—God forbid—my next-of-kin)…
How did the lady keep so thin?

I can’t enjoy a crowded den,
Bed every man who flashed a grin!
How did the lady keep so thin?
I’d rather lose than never win.

Bed every man who flashed a grin?
I wouldn’t quite call it a sin…
I’d rather lose than never win.
I couldn’t be Anaïs Nin.
Wild

These nights turn me wild inside
I whisper to the invisible magician
and zip up my silver dress.
These nights turn plum
whirling like the eye of a sunflower,
sweet and gritty as cinnamon.

And my mind is like cinnamon
sprinkled and baked inside
a star-sized sunflower,
a moonlight picnic for the magician
to eat with skins of plums,
to darken his gem-green dress.

I wear Joseph’s coat as a dress
and the hem smells like cinnamon.
I weave my hair with a peacock plume
and wonder what’s real, what’s inside.
Would it be better to embrace the Magic I and
sleep or let the sun flow

scattering the seeds of sunflowers
into the lifted basket of my dress,
an offering to the magician?
Honestly, I feel all the sins of men
forming patterns in my thoughts and I side
with vibrancy of those stains, black and plum.

Perhaps I should plumb
The polar coordinates of the sun’s flower
As it follows the light to the western side
of the field’s golden dress…
Turn toward light, send them in,
accept the Manic I and

let the white-coat magicians
feed me their pill-sized plums,
their shiver-to-a-stop ground cinnamon;
let them map the Lemon Queen sunflower
of my mind, the rapid cycling of its multicolored dresses,
let them see the confetti snow globe inside.

But I won’t. I am the magician, the turning sunflower,
The peach-pear-plum, Cinderella’s shadow-and-moon dress.
The world is a fantastic pastry. I am the cinnamon and sugar inside.

Becky Nicole James holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Queens University. Her poetry and fiction have appeared in many publications including Margie, a Cappella Zoo, Moon City Review, and Echo Ink Review.

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