anchor me

by Josephine Frances K.

my great grandma's kitchen floor was covered in knives

               if you drop them it's bad luck to pick them up yourself


                                                           you gotta get yourself up off the butcher's floor

                                            my grandpa said my biological clock should've already started ticking


i gather outdoorsy facts on a downwind

               like how to snare winter rabbits with loving enthusiasm, thank you rabbits for your lives


                                                          how to set up an offshore pirate radio station

                                            i’ll broadcast shortwave number lists that don’t mean anything


keep the boat moving so they can’t triangulate the signal

               wildflowers twine on seaside backbones


                                                         i’ve been accused of being a cold fish

i heard of this jellyheaded person who lives on a rusting sailboat

              i’ve stolen visions of travel to Secretary Island, Resolution Island

                                                     i could alight alone on snowy peninsulas

                                     if i never learn how to cauterise these senses to gain sense


if it's an institution then not only is it useless to me

               they cannot use me back


                                                           i’ll lift friends and loves onto the backs of seahorses

                                             or they’ll get sanitised in foaming surf rock

no ugly birds of paradise or sudden angry brainedness in the rain

              sweet aimless life, never thought i could see you through


                                                        goodbye symbolic no.25 letterboxes, inexplicable lemons in gutters

                                           i won’t point them out in a frenzy or cry on my birthday anymore


i'm too dehydrated to invest in plans


                                                       don’t know what to say when asked if i’ll have children

                                        chimerical body events dissolve along with the tidepools


no fearful sound of the bath draining, no sympathetic overstatements, no distress


                                                         the boat tilts carefree at a 45° angle

                                          won’t capsize as long as i live, i have a fish finder all rigged up


a 100km line reels in a single bream


                                                        i can get there without escalators or elevators

                                        millions of songs with 0 streams don't play in elevators


did you know you can buy a house for $1 on Trademe

              all you need to do is carry the house away yourself


                                                         double yolk egg on a tearful day means we’ll never break our promises

                                        my stomach holds two glass floats in webs, a Southerly change rolls through us


i bury my face in a soft fur coat

                really, i can stay ashore after all


                                                          i just stare at a scuffed wall for five hours then i'm there

Josephine Frances K. was born in Auckland, and has spent time in Melbourne and Wellington making perfume and writing poetry. Her work has appeared in Turbine|Kapohau and Starling. She has no drivers license or university degree, and hopes to change this soon.