Anthony Borruso

Anxieties: Strangler Fig

I am scared, that’s all you need to know. 
Whether it’s the flash-flood that gets me
or the rebel organ, the inside man plotting 
my demise in the space beneath my ribs, 

doesn’t matter. The lions will make of me 
a triptych. My head, torso, and legs will each 
arrive at different parties in the same clothes. 
No one will know of my misdeeds, of the guilt 

hiding under this scarf. Linden Tree, Basset Hound,
I could have done better, been more careful. 
Mudflats where has your hair gone? I’m packing 
pistils and stamens, I’m dangerous, ripe with love 

and greased like a mud puppy. I’m vulnerable  
and lonely. Venison is too gamey. Does the Strangler
Fig know what I did, will he tell my mom and dad 
and brothers. Does he play bridge with grandpa?

Anthony Borruso has an MFA in creative writing from Butler University and is a reader for Split Lip Magazine. He suffers from Chiari Malformation and sometimes examines this in his poetry. Currently, he teaches composition at Tallahassee Community College. His poems have been published or are forthcoming in The American Journal of Poetry, Spillway, Mantis, THRUSH, Frontier Poetry, decomP, The South Carolina Review, and elsewhere.
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