Kate Lohnes

Kate Lohnes is an undergraduate at the University of Iowa. She will graduate in 2020 with degrees in Philosophy and Creative Writing. Her work has been published by The Iowa Chapbook Prize (creative) and Encyclopaedia Britannica (academic). You can find her on Twitter @kate_lohnes.


Picture me a babe no words throated there has to be context. Like pigtails at Brookfield Zoo, once I lost my mother, all greeneyed bulbous, looking window through at tiger sleeping on riverbank, sketchers and ratted jacket rattled I was child then, was child once. Not here temporally isolated at this locus where you touch me [touch me touchme pleasetouchme]. Carbonbodies grow in time with nutrients so I ate once, you know, thick chilled carrot mush and chicken tenders but that mole I have here has always marked me cain. 

Under canopic and dense Dublin smoke settles on pores and clots them. Tell me I’m being dramatic. So pathetic lass. Lonely lass ununique, the river says. I say river in hellfire Cassandra burns and burns with Ajax. And river he still touches her. [7 year re cycle skin cycle reskincycle it hasn’t been that long yet]. So yeah she feels him and I’ll whine when I want to because always are we performative. You know this. Darling I told you of A. St Martin. His body burned through by bulletrip, hole stomach gaping so why not keep it open. Why not tie meat to string and dangle dip like candlemaker in gastric juice mmmmm let us see what it means digest.  

And that’s actually what happened do you get that alive with hole gaping. Alive with hole gaping and writhing doctor poked St Martin living trial belly bright under operation light, he never sewed body up. Even though he promised. Do you get that. Dipdipdrip meat let bacteria break down flesh inside bulletbrokenbody. It was education. Like when Erasistratus strapped men [slavebody he justified] living in auditorium cut larynx first to silence screams. Carved one throughline from genitals to throat opened spread eagle said look here look at heart beating living bodywrithing but heart heart heart thumpthump dyedha dyedha dyedha. Men died soon after. Thick cut unscreaming but shook violent on restraints. The people of auditorium took notes vigorously. So yeah it was a window and only a window. 

You have to understand. I was a child once unperforated. Body unlicked by flame, gastric juices unbubbling unmeattouched. There was a time when heart beat first so why not keep it open and see. I used to eat, digest, used to burn and swoon let fire touch me like Ajax, oh yes, just like Ajax. So there is context, you see, a throughline connective between who I was and the woman standing here, in front of you, Liffey at my left and your eyes so angry. Sunk and blue and angry, like river entered them reflecting shards of promised morning in the worst way. Me my eyes green no river. Everseparate, everclinging to somewhere between the rapture you know then god mountainside said kill for me. Me marked I had no choice prophecy is not one to bargain. 

But you know this. You know this part of the story. How one night eveslicked after swallowing serpent I folded myself into the felt hills of western Ireland. You know the sheep bleating mimicked fjord ruthlessly like when she spoke to us and it was not soft. Body wet with rain troyfire fading I had way too much gin and I liked it. And yeah evil maybe. But I was not A.  St Martin no juices to play with no liquid left. So how could I tell you of twenty years between here and my beginnings and have it seem like anything other than performance through tinted window. 

Instead just picture me a babe body still slicked viscous with heaven’s syrup and pretend momentarily that time has always been linear. 

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