Pernicious by Robert Beveridge


is the split

wrist, the licked

blood. Fingers

pressed to lips, taste

of copper,

feel of oil.



is the way the cells

crave. They die

with the numb force

of need. Fed, though,

they continue

content, satisfied.


You kiss

the knitted scar

that holds my wrist.

I yours.

This is the exchange,

the fluid commerce

between our mouths,

our lungs, our legs.


This is what we are,

what we will be,

transitive creatures

that flow, amoebic.

We ingest exercise,

starvation, give forth

what strength we can.


We circle

in this cycle

of anemia,

this thirst

for liquid essence.

We are the halves

that fuse to whole,

become the Rounded Man.


This has a name,

a term. It is




we feast

on one another,

break skin, sup,

are satiated.



is the split

wrist healed.


We go forth,



Robert Beveridge (he/him) makes noise ( and writes poetry in Akron, OH. Recent/upcoming appearances in Medium Chill, Mulberry Literary, and Remington Review, among others.

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