Sept/Oct 2020 • Vol. XLII No. 5 All of This Is TrueSeptember 1, 2020 |

I Have Masturbated Three Days in a Row and Can’t Stop Crying

after Eloisa Amezcua “I break out of my body this way, / an annoying miracle.”  — Anne Sexton, “The Ballad of the Lonely Masturbator” I am a perfect animal. I know what lives in my hips. the sweet capsizing of my body. I know that loving myself is supposed to get easier, but it’s the exact opposite of what I was told. at night, alone, my sweat dries into crystals. salt coats my tongue and runs down my chin. I wonder if it’s because winter refuses to come. because my mother tells me to “get over” a man who broke me into small pieces of glass. refusing to come. because the cat claws the leather couch. refusing to come. the heater breaks and my breath clouds the air. I am not the only one. plum ripening and rotting. long-fingered girl searching for the slippery buttons of a blouse. I do not forget to watch the actors gazing at each other. whispering what they want. every stifling deepness. I do not forget to note how they rise and fall like aching bridges. t

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