States of Poetry 2016 - Western Australia | ‘Inferno I : Invasion Day’ by Kia Groom

Invasion Day


My thighs are cold in the crevice
where the Coke can rested
as I drove. By the mailboxes
the ginger guy is                                                     staring                     again
his back against
my box, meat-pie
eyes, fixed
                                                                                  upon the middle distance
             not looking
at me, like I expect.

I disembark and seek out shadow,
walking in my skin-shoes where the pavement
is the darkest, where
my flesh won't burn. I'm white,
white, white – invisible
as ghost – the sidewalk of my hips
untrodden by their fingertips. A sunburned
country, empty.

I know summer from the sticky
pools of ice-cream melting in the eyes
of children, from the stink of burning
flesh on barbeques.

A guy walks past with a fresh
tattoo:                                                                    the Southern Cross all slick
                                                                                with blood and fluid,
in Glad Wrap
like a lump
of steak.

I salivate. I sink
my teeth into his arm.

I am so hungry.


Kia Groom


Kia Groom

Kia Groom

Kia Groom is founding editor of Quaint Magazine. The recipient of an Academy of American Poets award, the runner-up for the 2014 Judith Wright Poetry Prize, and a pushcart nominee, Kia's work has been published in The Mary Sue, Delirious Hem, and other blogs and magazines, as well as journals such as Cordite, Going Down Swinging, Westerly, Permafrost and Inky Needles. Her work is forthcoming in the Hunter Anthology of Contemporary Australian Feminist Poetry and HYSTERIA: Writing the Female Body.

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