There are back alleys of candor and private rendering of words. 
In my opening is a shattering howl. I am overbred, and overbaked
With a gut that is funded in fritters. Do you know the murdering lusts, 
The secret deposits of night keepings and black dressings?

                                                        We are always banking

I am tired of the way I am always running, of the way I lower my legs
and no spur falls. I am tired of being horizon-bound. I’ve read
the stories and each of your confidences. I’ve made corrections.  
What is truffled in turmoil is unspoken. 

I raise my shield again.

I step closer to the understanding. There are so many ways to commit;
There are so many ways to be committed. I will commit this to memory.
I defend myself in the unstinting kiss of comfort.  This is not seductive.
This is an inflammation, a festering, an epidemic of the heart.


Leah Umansky is the author of the dystopian-themed Straight Away the Emptied World (Kattywompus Press, 2016), the Mad-Men inspired chapbook, Don Dreams and I Dream  (Kattywompus Press, 2014), and the full length collection, Domestic Uncertainties (BlazeVOX, 2013). She is a graduate of the MFA Program in Poetry at Sarah Lawrence College, and teaches middle and high school English in New York City. She is also the host and curator of COUPLET: a poetry and music series.  Read more at her website.