Paging through the blind secrets printed
on our bodies’ spectral curtain:
unerased distorted white like the old stains
of spilled milk on clouded breasts;
the shy, pure night that pauses in the ribs,
before it fills each room
of our complicated manors; the adjustable
bone walls, and their floating
windows fitted with lenses: pain focused
through the spine in pen point;
and the panorama of shadow and please
dappled all through the pelvis.
Mary Elizabeth Birnbaum was born, raised, and educated in New York City. Mary’s translation of the Haitian poet Felix Morisseau-Leroy has been published in The Massachusetts Review, the anthology Into English (Graywolf Press), and in And There Will Be Singing, An Anthology of International Writing by The Massachusetts Review, 2019. Her work has appeared in Lake Effect, J Journal, Spoon River Poetry Review, Soundings East, Barrow Street, and other literary journals. In 2022 Mary received two nominations for a Pushcart Prize.