A Letter to the Candidate


in response to the 2012 presidential election

It is winter, and you become separated,
disconnected, resumed—it is winter, and
you become a child. It is as if you are—
as if you always were—one body within
a much larger body, one window within
another. There is furniture where
the organs should have been, except for the eyes.
The eyes move, the eyes see, the eyes change color
with the weather. There are posters everywhere,
of children—of children eating, of children
eating goats, goat eyes, goat legs, goat kidneys.
The lack of donors.
A car careens into the intersection,
a truck merges into traffic as if reading
the definition to altruism.
It is winter, and it is a moment, and
it is a car and a truck, colliding.
The lack of legs, the eating of goat legs,
the donation of other parts, the taking.
The taking of children, their removal.
In a dream, I remember you stole my child.
You swallowed her hair over and over.
Your fingers never stopped touching her shoes.
The posters cluster together as if attracted,
making room for other posters, covering every surface—
the floor, the ceiling, the heart, the left kidney—
except the eyes that continue to look out
through the larger body, the body in the world,
the body that exists in the satellites,
that was made somewhere in the stars and
delivered through other larger bodies,
with smaller bodies watching.
It is winter, and it is the election.
Your smaller body turns and collides
with poster after poster, your smaller body turns
black and blue with its lack of water,
its lack of experience on the West coast.
There are words, and there are colors,
inside and outside the larger body, and
the color of your smaller body changes,
bleeding, corroded, dead.
And yet it is not quite dead.
It lasts until the final stretch, when your larger body
places itself on the stage, giving a speech and then—
you realize blue does not turn red with wind.
Red and blue combine.


About mckenzielynntozan

McKenzie Lynn Tozan lives and writes in South Bend, Indiana, where she works as the Departmental Secretary of English and World Language Studies at Indiana University South Bend, and remains closely affiliated with 42 Miles Press, New Issues Poetry and Prose, and Wolfson Press. She previously received her MFA in Poetry from Western Michigan University, where she worked as the Layout and Design Editor for New Issues Poetry and Prose and as an Assistant Editor of Poetry for Third Coast. Her poems have appeared in Encore Magazine, Sleet Magazine, Rogue Agent, Thank You for Swallowing, Whale Road Review, The James Franco Review, The Birds We Piled Loosely, and Analecta; and her book reviews have appeared on her website and on The Rumpus. She lives with her husband, their daughter, and three cats. For more, visit www.mckenzielynntozan.com. View all posts by mckenzielynntozan

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