This week in the PEN Poetry Series, PEN America features a new poem by Melissa Broder. 

Last Sext

Am I crying on coal mountain.

The sky is a funnel I want it.

I want to be sucked by the moon.

Or needled into the night.

Or into the eye of a cock.

Of a boy with a mouth like mine.

And together we enter a door in the sky.

Which is one door.

But all doors.

And the breath there is his.

But mine.

And the truth in the door is many.

As the truth on coal mountain is many.

But also one truth.


A truth I have felt since always.

Before the time of the cock.

Do I point to it from my sickbowl.

Perched high atop coal mountain.

And I can never say its name.

As I gape into the dark.

And see the jaw of a boy.

Reflected in my sickbowl.

My bowl of gristle and blood.

My thoughts of bellies and scythes.

And how to cut me out of me.

The vine of the mind and the heart and its sword.

And the smoke of the coals in the dark.

And his hands on my dress and his mouth on my death.

And the bites of want in the dawn.

When the boy disappears with the sun.

How his body becomes a spook.

And his semen dissolves in the wind.

But his shadow remains on coal mountain.

Am I mine.


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