I carry my rage like a dead fish,
limp and stinking in my arms.
I press it against my breast,
whisper to it,
people on the streets flee from me …
I don’t know: is it the smell of death
that makes them flee
or is it the fear
that my body’s warmth
might bring rage back to life?
Copyright 1992 by Alicia Partnoy. Reprinted from Revenge of the Apple – Venganza de la manzana, published by Cleis Press, with permission from Alicia Partnoy. Translated by Richard Schaaf, Regina Kreger, and Alicia Partnoy.
This poem was originally read in the On Being episode “Laying the Dead to Rest.”