Self-Portrait as Mailbox – by Merna Dyer Skinner

Fickle as a witness / in a court case of knives
and bespectacled assassins / my nearby compatriot
groans / overstuffed with envelopes / from lopsided
mythological lands / where lichen grows
in hanky-panky gardens / of lollipops / and centipedes.

                       Inside me / cocktail hour adverts for swanky
                       clubs / with saxophone-playing crows /
                       and washboard strumming statues / visionaries
                       leaping / from one-dimensional wallpaper /
                       to three dimensional letters.

I await you / my daily visitor / janitor of my tin innards /
to collect / and sort / my enticements / to rip apart
each sticky lip / with the letter opener / you found
in the loveseat / behind / the starfish pillow / while
you hummed / to the hoopla / nightingale.

                     With puzzle grass / planted / beneath my feet I
                     am wed / to this ditch / to silently serve / the caress
                     of your secret key / Tip inserted / my invisible
                     tumblers undulate / When your satiny fingers / reach
                    inside me / my worship for you begins / anew.

merna skinnerPhotographer and communications consultant, Merna Dyer Skinner lives in Portland, OR. Her poems have appeared in Rust + Moth, The Baltimore Review, and The Lily Poetry Review, among others, and three anthologies. Her chapbook, A Brief History of Two Aprons, was published by Finishing Line Press. Merna has lived in six US states and traveled to six continents.