by Andres Rojas

after J.T. Burke

At my chalice-smooth fingers
bronzed as judgment trumpets, one hand
glacier-blue, the other lilies and teeth—

at my terebinth ribs, my camel-thorn breasts
thick with phoenix-egg pearls, rich
as the stories you tell your own import—

at my columbine liver and womb,
the daily hummingbird feeds:

you could exhaust your life
and miss it,

this sky nothing like a grave
in its illusion of infinity, my wings
cruciform under a crown’s fixed diamonds,

the sun’s stolen seeds, a hearth’s
peacock flowers, until your city
lies stripped to marrow and ash.

Here boys played at rocks.
Here virgins were trussed:

I am not the body
nailed to this volcano.

I am the volcano
holding her breath.


ANDRES ROJAS is the author of the chapbook Looking For What Isn’t There (Paper Nautilus Debut Series winner, 2019) and of the audio chapbook The Season of the Dead (EAT Poems, 2016). His poetry has been featured in the Best New Poets series and has most recently appeared or is forthcoming in, among others, AGNIBarrow Street, Colorado Review, Massachusetts Review, New England Review, and Poetry Northwest.


Featured Image: “Prometheus” by Ryutaro Koma