week of March 8 - 14, 2004
C.A. Cross and C.C. Russell
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C.A. Cross was born in Las Vegas, Nevada, in 1967. Since moving to Los Angeles, CA in 1990, she has explored almost everything she has wanted to. She has several more experiences to go.
She lives and dreams with a 6 year old within hearing distance of the ocean and tides of Hermosa Beach, CA.
The following work is from my upcoming chapbook, "Nude".
The following work is Copyright © 2004, and owned by C.A. Cross and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.
The smell of his neck, like fried bologna after a cigarette the t-shirt you
inhale when your lover is gone the rain and the plains of Amarillo where
prairie dogs dig up the dirt, where Cadillac's are buried nose down. That
somber, quiet longing that soothed every summer with mosquito bites the size
of half apples the pink of the calamine. Aunt Mame's Witch Hazel.
The paints, the wine, the grunge-capped teeth and the death of stale smoke on
some mornings the dust from the wings of the crows who caw, caw, caw leaving
me to wonder if they really are my guides.
The mold that creeps up to kiss me and lodges in my lungs the halitosis of a
stranger, whose open mouth I can smell from across the hallway the friend at
the airport whose scent stopped me mid-sentence, calling me back to his
childhood room and later his home in New Mexico.
The sex that stays under your fingernails, the dryer air from next door, the
smell of earth beaten from the rain, of snails, of oil-slicked asphalt, of
your own sweat from another sleepless night.
I wanted to savor it so much, I breathed only through my mouth.
A sin of spices fell through me from your flesh
That high, acrid smell of the Middle East
made me claw your back and suck on your skin.
I wanted to fold into you,
pull you on top and over me and have our bodies fit
like a thousand years of struggle.
I wanted to drink you.
I couldn't get you deep enough inside of me.
I grinded your pelvis into mine, forcing the rod of your body through me.
Enveloping you in flesh, like raw liver.
You said something in Turkish, and I imagined you were far away from bed.
When I opened my eyes, you said I had been dreaming and speaking in tongues.
Those may trudge
and I eat
of the sea.
C.C. Russell was born in East Liverpool, Ohio and has lived most of his life in Wyoming. He currently lives in Hicksville New York with his wife where he works in retail. His poetry is forthcoming from New York Quarterly, Brevities, Long Island Quarterly and others. His short fiction is forthcoming from Ilya's Honey and Unwound.
The following work is Copyright © 2004, and owned by C.C. Russell and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.
I am kissing Charity,
and in the dream, her name
is pronounced 'Chastity.'
I spent hours trying to explain to you
how these things can crush us
with their similarities,
Outside, rain takes one more step
What we can say tonight at best:
We are hours out, still,
from the truth.
Had a moment
- ends tied gracefully to means.
- slight cease to hostilities.
The side of another face
filling the hollow
of another empty palm,
save for counting the hours left.
previously published in Soul Fountain, Vol. 22
What She Said
I am a girl.
I live by landmarks,
on the crisp edge
in the summer