Concealed by a Doorway, Can't Turn Away
Karen Schubert

In the Cut (Jane Campion, dir.)

I am concealed by a doorway, can’t
turn away from her lips sliding up
and down what is later revealed
as a dildo.  It might be the cop, the way
he opens my door, my books,
labia, lingua, linger. Outside the girl
is decapitated, her lips: the crime,
the punishment, blood thick
from its opening. The cop undresses me,
I question him. The tattoo. Don’t
get me wrong: before the cop, I laid myself
bare over my own fingers, there
was already a dead girl beneath
the window. I want to know the cop
didn’t kill the girls. I undress for him. 
Noise comes from my throat, I am not
decapitated. Days, I teach writing to kids,
write their street slang in my book. I crave
the words, the cop, I show him how
I got away from the arm that locked
around me, the cop says was it his right arm
or his left, he puts an arm
around me in demonstration. 


Karen Schubert's

poetry and prose appear or are forthcoming in Gently Read Literature, MUSE, Jenny, Penguin Review, Wisconsin Poets' Calendar 2012 and others. My chapbooks are Bring Down the Sky (Kattywompus, 2011) and The Geography of Lost Houses (Pudding House, 2008). Nominated for 2011 Best of the Web, I teach writing at Youngstown State University.



Write to the Author | Go to the Archives