I dream about liposuction every other day.
How it would feel to be sucked clean.
I'm always either starving or uncomfortably full.
I feel myself move, lipsticked & gussied sludge
sack, the pregnant pause of the century. Is this
what it feels like to be pregnant? Or is this
how it feels to be me? It is so easy to gain
weight, so easy to accumulate. I drop
myself off at the curb. I spend life
waiting for rides. My breasts expand & some
men notice but mostly I'm a flooded car sinking
in the sea, sighing as sunlight gives up on me.
In death my mother dreams fat
dreams forever: of my affable
father the enabler & dense midnight
doughnuts, sizzly chicken parm,
last SnackWell's rattling in the grass
green box, chemical sheen like the slick
forehead swoop of a confident suitor.
A final treat of ice milk calcifies in her
colon, turns her stuffed shell into dirt
maraca vibrating inside earth's chocolate
crumble. I hear it loud in my own fat
dream & I am rattling too, inside
the distant parenthetical of ice cream
truck jingles, sugary specters that wait
& wait & wait & wait & circle & circle
& circle the block
Nicole Steinberg is the author of Glass Actress (forthcoming from Furniture Press Books) and Getting Lucky (Spooky Girlfriend Press, 2013), as well as three chapbooks, most recently Clever Little Gang, winner of the 4X4 Furniture Press Chapbook Award. Her work has been featured or reviewed in the New York Times, Newsweek, Flavorwire, Bitch, Hyperallergic, and elsewhere. She's the founder of New York's EARSHOT reading series and she lives in Philadelphia.