KP Kaszubowski

Destroy me June Jordan I need it

I hope you know it wasn’t me that twisted your ankle / how could you regret anything more than what you didn’t even do / I gave my wrist away to play table hockey / falling through the table falling through /  I gift myself the chance to sleep for a whole year 

I remember that June where all I could do was be awake in a bed / I could feel the oil inside of me begin its boil / the origin of snakes under the peritoneum / I heal it I heal it I heal it / what do I have to do to get the snakes back / please just tell me I can’t keep guessing on the quizzes / I was told I pour boiling oil over people 

but I know in my snakes / I know inside the snakes of my snakes / that it was the oil they wanted / the boiling oil all over their skin / and of course it burns / it is oil / why am I made liable for the burn / I’m just taking quizzes over here hoping to find the results to where my snakes have gone 

I blush at the thought of forgiving you / keep me away from granite table tops my head falls down so violently / checking the spoons for the sharp splice / giving up forgiving for Lent / giving up going home for Lent / the bemusing of a snake pile Lent / the mastery of somethinghood for Lent / give me a break for Lent / giving everything up for Lent 

how many times do I have to tell you I don’t have anything for you / I don’t have anything for myself but today I feel like I found something / I want to keep and she looks like June Jordan 

and she looks like wind blowing up leaves / as fifty people circle a tree we call June Jordan / and she looks like a clock striking three June Jordan / and she looks like me if I looked at myself June Jordan 

don’t take my June from me / I have got a hold of her / could she be the snakes I’ve been penciling in the circles on the quizzes for / could it be the snakes are back 

they’re looking for my Easter June Jordan  / crack my knuckles for me / it’s 
time / my snakes 


Don’t let the violence stay inside your body

I own this type of cloud that sobs next to me whenever I need a lift. She sounds like static after some time. This morning, she burst open a whole new brook. I’ve always wanted to live where I could hear the water– 


I ask Jenna what flower she’d be if she was a flower just today (“Lilies.”) but I don’t think she understood the violence of the proposition. (“What color lilies?”) She didn’t catch that she would be thrown into the whole life of a flower (“Tiger.”), subjected to the pluckers without a lampshade, a crescent mouth, or incisors to protect herself. (“What flower does your danger feel like?”) I’ll keep my eyes to myself, even if her violets look so good when they’re breaking open her tears. 


What would a pelvis smell like if it was fried outside in Liberty Park? Would pelvises differ in the way they’ve been smote? The knife makes magenta contact. Translate this as a body seized from the self. Enter the BBQ with the sole purpose of “punish” for the people who gather. It doesn’t matter how flat you sit at the rain-soaked table if everyone there has added to the loom of shadows that left you to solo, left you to hunger for a colossal care. Colossal as in chasm.  Colossal as in natatorium. Drowned before you were able to fit into the ice cube tray of love. Something about too much vodka. Something about it becoming the same as water after a point. It’s not a family, but it’s certainly a crowd. Wefted breasts who were never a cup.


I often open around this time,
enough hurt pulsing behind my ears

how aquatic of me
to invite you to my body


Today I want only $17mil so that I can fly to Chicago, to Milwaukee, to Monterey, to Cape Cod, to San Fran every weekend.  The way it’s looking right now is that I am able to cry only if I’m a millionaire, first class seat on my way to the people that can draw it out of me–

would you think I deserved the money more or less if you believed me? I’m so full of water and I’m afraid of what will happen if I can’t get it out. If only my rain was a season. If only I knew how to make myself into a body of water. I could ask the Ocean for tips on how to charge admission.

I could ask the Ocean how much money it would cost to
gun down intruders–


KP Kaszubowski (she/her) is a poet, filmmaker, playwright, and writing instructor. Her debut poetry collection somnieeee was published in 2019 by Vegetarian Alcoholic Press, and her debut feature film Ringolevio premiered in 2020 at Dances With Films in Los Angeles. Her previous poetry has been published (as Kristin Peterson) by pitymilk press, Great Lakes Review, dancing girl press, Juked, Flag + Void, ICHNOS, and elsewhere. She is currently an MFA candidate in Creative Writing (Poetry) at Eastern Washington University where she teaches rhetoric, composition, and creative writing courses and is pursuing a graduate certificate in Disability Studies.