My love for you is a sun inside my chest.
It burns like shingles, wrings tears from my eyes
like the hands of a tough old woman washing
clothes in a tin tub. You’re as toxic as poke salad,
your words a swarm of bees. You haunt me
like a chain-clanking ghost, yet I welcome you
like the mailman. You’re a zeppelin in disguise,
the zip line to disaster. I need you like bad brakes,
a stick of dynamite, loose bricks in the walk.
But step into a room and my heart bumps its mouth
against the bowl of my ribs like a starving
goldfish. You scissor-cut my will, turn my brain
to shredded wheat. Look at me once, and my pot
begins to boil. Look at me twice, and the dog
of my desire becomes a junkyard beast —
though the feral cat in me hungers
to call your body home.