Body Flow

 

Body Flow
After ‘Vile Bodies’ at White Rabbit Gallery

The woman in POOR GODDESS has a body like me.
Maybe.
I’m in the WONDERFUL CITY.
Walking around, I see a
hip and leg wrapped around a whale
half bodies
starshaped arrangement of limbs
legs everywhere
hippos suspended on raised platform
this city is ugly
I should leave.

I guess it would be fitting to describe my body here.
spidery
flowy
nothing to hide
hips in the wrong place
unambitious arms
wish my T-shirt fit the way it does
on the young M volunteer
need to work-out
these shoulders
the young F volunteer
is wearing those boots I wanted last year
her legs look so tiny
mine need muscle to play football.
Hers are muscley too but slight

The first time I had heard ‘they’ with my name after ‘her’.
I said the second felt more right
her arm across my body
I think about the time we ran
she put the netball in my hand
and showed me how to move
in three steps
ankles matter just as much
in football

Bodies are vessels but mine does not float well.
I sit with the NEW BOOK OF MOUNTAINS AND SEAS
Think of my tits, itchy under
I follow the narrative as it speaks to me
Shovel bodies into a pit
create an ash pile
Rats skate down the tunnel
Water comes
Everything under
The stars don’t go back
As soon as you think of leaving, leave

Ellen van Neerven

Author: Ellen van Neerven

Ellen van Neerven is a Yugambeh writer from South East Queensland. Her books include the award-winning 'Heat and Light' and 'Comfort Food'.