Monday, January 21, 2019

Armine Iknadossian: The Little Sinner

Undone every morning,
the devil at her knees
as her mother combs her hair,
grabs and tames the tangles.

Hundreds of wooden fingers
unravel hours of twirling
around an index finger
before bed, before dreams
of collapsing altars
and dark-haired women laughing.
By morning, a head full of spider
webs; so many evil knots to save.

She undoes her hair at bedtime,
a thing possessed – half-dead.
Unbound and spread
across the white pillow, around
her face, a black halo, a sea of little sins.

Budding, her breasts
blind kittens that will open their eyes
after many slow Sundays, unwindings,
elastic hours that stretch and shrink
like rubber bands wound around
a black mass of hair,
a fistful of worry,
a handful of worms in a dream.

Previously published in Cultural Weekly

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