Meghan Privitello

Paternal Estate

There are spaces that need to be filled: the bread loaf’s pocket of air, the womb that chooses miscarriage over deliverance. This is where god builds his pathetic homes. When it is cold, he burns his feet on the fire. He leaves a trail of char that we decipher as law. In between the oven and the wall, a mouse gives birth to a requiem of pink. Every baby dies. It is a miracle, the way we can fall in love with what was never meant to be ours. And in the middle of the night, when a floorboard shifts its weight, when we say Dear God Fuck Me Harder as a stranger takes us by the waist, constellations appear. Our retinas detach; we call it the beginning of a universe. We measure the distances of space in god-lengths. Here, in the attic of our reveries, the dust is a mathematician of proof: carry yourself into god’s lap, borrow what you can from the animals to solve his body by naming its scent. Sulpher. Mothball. Rot. If you come to god’s door and leave a Valentine, how long will it take until he loves you infinitely? In your party dress, you wait for him to pick you up in a car on fire. You say Father, he’s safe, let me stay out lateLet him build another home in my fate. God, let me be made and unmade.

Meghan Privitello’s first book, A New Language for Falling out of Love, is forthcoming from YesYes Books in 2014. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Boston Review, Gettysburg Review, Barrelhouse, Sixth Finch, Pinwheel, Linebreak, Quarterly West, Best New Poets 2012, & elsewhere. She currently serves as co-editor of The New Megaphone. You can follow her on Twitter @meghanpriv.