Thursday, June 18, 2020

Triny Finlay : Two poems

In Which We Are Matched, At Every Age

0.       Suckle for love and comfort,
suckle to stay alive. 

1.       Teeter:
our strong, tentative bodies reach
for a safe hand to steady us.

2.       Name everything as if
we are lexicographers; announce
our new language to the world,
loud and proud.

3.       Virtuoso conductors of small symphonies
—of wedding guests; of faux-ailing neighbours—
who stand out in every photo.

4.       Clutch our stuffie friends in troubled sleep: 
one worn bear, 
one wandering turtle. 

5.       Schooled and whip-smart,
extra-long eyelashes
shield wild eyes.

12.     The next Prime Ministers:
we’ll guide the tired, the poor,
the homeless, huddled masses,
tempest-tossed, toward us.

13.     Devour Gordon Korman novels
and noodles, every desire
laced with daydreams laced 
with despair laced with buttered bliss. 

14.     Outliers, secret crushes 
secretly crush us.

15.     Pained queer selves, confirmed: 
some quiet, some blaring on every stereo.

16.     Strive, strive, cut off
the rinds and pith
to get to our suprèmes.

20.     Recover from lovers who should have known better. 

25.     Hold onto everyone 
who is kind to us, and the certainty
of words struck against a page.

30.     Stretch ourselves like maple taffy, pulled
and pulled and prodded; hang on
to ice crystals and caprice.

35.     Suckle, teeter, name, conduct, clutch, shield, guide, devour, outlie, queer, strive, recover, hold,
stretch and pull and stretch and pull
and stretch and
and soothe
and soothe
and soothed.

Self-Portrait as Paper Clip

Bent out of joint
in order to hold everything together.
Won’t snap,
won’t dissolve in an acid bath.

But needs to be re-engineered, designed, built
for the shape of the new
manuscript it clutches, attached like an infant’s latch
to a firm, nourishing nipple.

Re-bent, refined, re-defined as nothing you’d ever find
at Staples, or bundled in bulk at Costco.

So striking against the printed page
you have to look again—
this trinket, so ready to be unfastened.

Triny Finlay is a pansexual poet who teaches English and Creative Writing at UNB in Fredericton. She is the author of You don’t want what I’ve got, Phobic, Splitting Off, and Histories Haunt Us. IG: @cast_iron_pan /

most popular posts