Leah Tieger

          Upheaval makes a gleaming I could hoard or spend. It is the way of things

                                                            that the strike-slip shatters like a glazed pot.

                                                            that earth is a body, self-healing.

          Along each fault, a series of fractures.

                                        The tie rod fails and locks the steering wheel in place.

          My father says X-ray and broken right foot. He says glass and tweezers.

          My mother coils the phone cord in her fingers. She does not know I am a cell dividing

          inside her body’s mineral swell.

                            In subterranean rivers, aurum and silica.

                            In milk and eggs, a rash or welt.

                                      I distend at citrus. Wheat. Leather belts. The arm that lifts them

          is splintered with window. Such is the way of things

                                                  that earth and skin offer up through erosion.

                                                  that gold unburies like a foreign body.

          Sometimes, in the fault’s quartz veins, gold and its counterfeit fuse together.

          Sometimes my father shows me his arm and a new translucence breaking

          the surface.

                                    It is the way of things, that the damage rises sparkling. Look.

          When the hurt first meets the light, it trembles.


about the author