I have 206 bones in my body and most
could be my friends or people I envy:
clavicle for her music; radius for their reach;
patella, my old crush; and tibia and fibula and phalanges—
actors or wise guys I grew up with. The moon is an old
skull with dried-up watery ideas, basaltic and ancient.
Here are my favorite waters of the moon: Sea
of Crises, Sea of Knowledge, Seething Bay,
Bay of the Center, Lake of Time, Lake of Fear.
The bones of an old pelvis are prayers and tonics: sacrum,
ilium, coccyx. That night in Salem I put meat
into my body for the last time, I felt as if I were drinking pure
mammal fear as I sipped hot bone marrow broth
from a lunar green bowl.
Jennifer Martelli is the author of The Queen of Queens (forthcoming, Bordighera Press, 2022) and My Tarantella (Bordighera Press), awarded an Honorable Mention from the Italian-American Studies Association, selected as a 2019 “Must Read” by the Massachusetts Center for the Book, and named as a finalist for the Housatonic Book Award. She is also the author of the chapbooks In the Year of Ferraro (Nixes Mate Press) and After Bird, winner of the Grey Book Press open reading, 2016. Her work will appear or has appeared in The Tahoma Literary Review, Thrush, Cream City Review, Verse Daily, Iron Horse Review (winner, Photo Finish contest), and Poetry. Jennifer Martelli has twice received grants from the Massachusetts Cultural Council for her poetry. She is co-poetry editor for Mom Egg Review.