A Bride for a Flood
by Sara Elkamel
a duplex after Jericho Brown
They took me to the north-flowing river
Running through the kingdom like a nerve.
The kingdom had some nerve allowing it.
I was to wed the river, make a fast home in its milk.
I had no interest in weddings or a home of milk.
Still god’s men beat drums until their fingers bled.
Drums bled like a bride begging an unnamed god.
He had no name because all the names were his.
I had no name for what I wanted. Not this. Desire
As sudden as cool milk in the breasts of a virgin.
Every year they packed the breasts of a virgin
Like prayers into a white lotus corset.
I had no interest in prayer. Wailing in white
lotus corsets, they took us to the north-flowing river.
Photo credit: Abdullah Helwa