local_library Dead Rope

by C. Dianne Long

Published in Issue No. 4 ~ July, 1996

When I bring you home

all red-faced and bundled with a black cord

will you smell like sweet cotton candy

or rotten as a graying corpse

will you cry all night

leaving my head throbbing

splitting like your dead rope

or will you coo with such sweet delight

that my heart burns with motherly love

as your drooling, toothless, silly smile

clears my burning red, watery eyes

or will I curse you and smell you

and shake you by your arms

shutting you up inside your holding tank

vacuuming out your cries

or will I love you, love you, love you

or will I see a crooked eye

will I love you, love you, love you

or leave you

with a kiss good-bye.

account_box More About

C. Dianne Long was 29 years old at the time these poems were published. She was born and raised in Memphis, where she attended Memphis State University. She has been writing poetry since the age of seven -- and for the most part has kept her work a secret. These poems were her first published works.