i. i want to amen a prayer in the cathedral of your breasts, but who answers this kind of prayer? ii. forgive me when i said your body is a cloud with a barrage of hymns in its mouth. i lied. it is the vowels of the alphabet; there is no wor[l]d outside you. iii. think me not a fan of lust when i say, let her breasts satisfy me—these words enveloped me when the bible undressed itself, one sabbath day. iv. i made a bow of your hip-bone, & a quiver of arrows from my eyes— should war rattle in our bodies. v. neither is there salvation in any other, nor hope for a future whose brightness the sun envies—but in you. vi. home is not a place; it is a person. vii. i squat in the chest of a moonless night in search of a lamp, & you're showing up. viii. redemption sleeps in the hollow of your thighs—i want to be redeemed. ix. i water the lullabies in your chest like a plantation. & this is my daily devotion. amen? x. & thunder is a language—the dialect God speaks—the way He grumbles—when He razors the curtain of heaven with lightning & discovers the junction where our lips meet. xi. your body is the testimony i want to witness, the miracles i want to proclaim. xii. *àdàbà ìfẹ́, wá gbé mi ró. xiii. on the market days of your hips, would you have me shade my desires? bunkers! xiv. allow me moonwalk you in time to the very beginning—when the melons on your chest were devoid of a harvester . . . xv. i do not want to be unfamiliar with the gospels in your body—bow my ear to these sermons— open your bible let's moan in the spirit. xvi. i see trees chase men & men chase madness— but madness chase me—when it makes a fist of me, i beg you to wear me a regalia of the sanities in your waist. xvii. & if the gods in my body have gone bananas, you are the goddess that holds their sanity. *dove of love, come save me.
Beeper Peddle is a writer and healer living on the East Coast. She lives with her partner and their beloved soul puppy. Beeper writes about sorrows, lies, and deep loves. When you read her work, you will dip down into her heart and end up in all manner of body parts. Should you find yourself reflected in these words, it is merely coincidence; however, it does not surprise her you share the same heart. Find her at bethpeddle.com and @beeperpeddle on Twitter and Instagram
Flourish Joshua is a (performance) poet from Nigeria, a NaiWA poetry scholar, 2nd place winner of the 7th Ngozi Agbo Prize for Essay, Managing Editor at NRB, Interviews Editor at Eremite Poetry & Poetry Reader at Bluebird Review and Frontier Poetry. He is published (or forthcoming) on London Grip Poetry, East French Press, Olongo Africa, Ghost City Review, Brittle Paper, Indianapolis Review, Bluebird Review, and elsewhere. Say hello on Instagram/Twitter @fjspeaks.