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Digital Poetics 2.2 I leave my body again, snake: Shiri Shah



I leave my body again, snake, like I leave my mouth -

I enter myself again before I leave another time, looking back without the full stop inciting an end, no end,

I look back and I see skin shed past heliotropic landscapes of the future entwining the body around wrought-conceptual modes of living

What time is and what it is doing,

what my name is and how this is different from yours, I leave myself again to

Come back, inspect how much growth sprouted

Since the last ritual cord cutting

My skin, so cold it feels wet - women tend to take hotter showers as we’re considered inherently colder to the touch,

so our feet on your back in bed can be a sharp awakening

Women tend to be colder but I am not a woman so i leave my body again

coming back to the steamy rooms of my mothers south facing bedroom window and

entering the ice cold cavern that my father left behind

women tend to be colder

I leave my body again, snake,

like I leave my ears on the ground burrowing in deep nose first, g

rains of sand massaging my lidless eyes

I spark my tongue to feel the air to know where I am going

my tongue reaches across over a border of dry moss and into the tunnel of another,

forked,


I can’t decide which way so accept the compression of dirt pushing me further into myself as I try to leave myself prohibits me from turning around to examine where i had come from


I leave my body every two decades - I left my body like in short bursts like a firing squad between 2016 and 2020, I keep leaving my body, snake, like I leave my mouth - I wrap myself around my spine, endlessly, head raised to the sun and back down I go -


charmed by music vibrating through air drawing me further up to box away and transition into another safe space full of trust, responsibility for multiple tongues flicking towards me, secrets, ancient history, benevolence, the moon yes I hold the moon as I leave my body again - before I leave another time, looking back and without the full stop inciting an end,


There will be no end to this, the earth stretches out endlessly,

filled with hyperactive performances there are dozens of feet on my head jumping and pouncing, I leave my body again,


Or did my body leave me behind, complete regeneration

I am smooth to the touch, almost wet, black beads glistening and i have

all the time in the world to stop for a bite to eat - swallowed hole, like my body once once,

rest and recuperation - one day i will show you how deep the earth can be


And how high an eagle can fly,


One day there will be no more tunnels and

no more sky,

one day there will come the full stop, time abstracting the eyes on each side of my head, insinuating that i am not a predator but

pray,

i am cold not hot,

i am wet not dry,


according to the scrolls the scriptures the diagrams but what they don’t know is that i will leave my body again and become bigger with a larger throat to sing from and to scream -


i am yesterday and today - i am one word to speak but never to name - like an emerald semi-precious, evocative, green with envy and money, green with life and fertility, i sometimes wish i could bring my mouth back to me


wedged and breathing between two suns // we exist between two suns // we forget we walk on the sun // we choose to forget this ball of fire pulsating a heart beating throbbing // yet i am much closer to the central sun for my skin is cold and as a woman, i like hot showers, and once i tasted green on the forked tongue that told me truths


i leave my body again, snake, like i leave my mouth - i enter myself again before I leave another time, looking back and without the full stop inciting an end, no end, i look back and see skin shed past the heliotropic landscapes of the future and entwining the body around wrought-conceptual modes of living



'I leave my body again, snake,' was written during one of Free Fall Write's collaborative sessions between the two founders.


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Shirine is a creative writing facilitator and consultant at Free Fall Write. They moonlight as a poet and theatrical makeup artist. Currently, they are developing a visual poetic piece for the University of Exeter and The Royal Albert Memorial Museum. Their work has been exhibited at the Turner Contemporary and VFD. Shirine hosts a quarterly writers night called Untitled: Voices showcasing the work of marginalised communities. Much of their poetry and prose focuses on faith, contradiction, and the disconnect between un/consciousness

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This publication is in Copyright. Shiri Shah, 2021.


The moral right of the author has been asserted. However, the Hythe is an open-access journal and we welcome the use of all materials on it for educational and creative workshop purposes.

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