it’s me with scalloped borders
skull packed with ash and seed
it’s me but made of smoke

coughing flies the size of bullets
a silent theater bizarre: open
on me as a constellation of old coins

dissolving at the bottom of a fountain
then to a writhe of hands that
regards then betrays itself

these days who can say
there’s a difference between
bloodletting and ‘clinical emergency’

anything i consume folds itself
into the dark corners and becomes whispered
the mattress moans something about sysiphus

and its favorite ways to poison a forest
winter follows me to work
its mouth full of bilgewater

and shows me a knife
that turns anything it touches grey
winter is on occasion the only word i can say

it’s me saying all my favorite words
texture lackadaisical insidious deciduous
with both hands clamped between my teeth

me (deciduous) a hickory splitting the tiles
of a strip mall leaves folding and folding
into the slate sky on this such a lovely day.

Jordan Ranft

Jordan Ranft

Jordan Ranft is a Bay Area native. In 2015 he took 3rd place at the National Poetry Slam with the Berkeley Poetry Slam team. In 2016 he was a finalist in the Pamela Maus Poetry Contest at UC Davis. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in Midway, Rust+Moth, and Milkfist. Along with writing poems, he is an arts and culture journalist for several magazines in and around Northern California.
Jordan Ranft

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