by Jessica Lee
When does cohabitation become co-possession?
You bat my hand away
from my own fingers, tell me
to quit picking at the layer of skin I’m peeling
back from the bed around my thumb. I nod
submissive, suck the blood, then sit
on my own hands—a show of moderation.
Like a child, I pay pretend reverence
as if you were a parent, my part-creator.
We switch roles at night over the sink:
I tell you to be more gentle
with your gums, use a lighter hand
for brushing teeth. I’d argue
oral health matters more than
bitten cuticles, long-term,
but what’s the use? Your body
matters to my body and vice versa.
Still, our hands are ultimately
our own. We show love
in the ways the ways we know how.
Concern, a bird twittering just beyond
the window. We look up, smile
at her song, then go on drawing
our own blood.