Two Poems by Jordan Durham

Jordan Durham

Jordan Durham

Jordan Durham is currently pursuing her MFA in poetry at the University of Idaho. Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in Phoebe and OVS Magazine. She works as editor in chief of Fugue.

How to Stay

Take the sun by way of mouth and swallow
its yellow burn. Avoid chewing around the softened
edges. You will discover a full throat does not ask
for less but more. Close hands around that skin—
its bare-breasted need for touch—to recognize satiation.
Understand the will to touch comes from a curiosity
beyond eyes, gazing, wanting to undress the world. So if
you’re still questioning, go ahead, use other senses: the nose,
instead, can lead you past what you see, towards bridges
you know, bartering their exhaust for the satisfaction
of glimpsing horizon. Breathe and breathe
again where your breath slips past canines
and their teeth in the brush. Their need for flight
and return. Distance, you hear, is a thin shade covering
savage light. It hangs to create a lesser shadow,
the one nailed under your feet always longing
away. If you find yourself back home: peer out the window
open through the slick silence and yell at what once cased
itself around your skin. Is there an hour worth
choking through? you ask and force yourself to drink
the unanswered, the brimmed, beyond your fill.




Bride Road

Tulip petals are the drifters patched with denim, lace
handkerchiefs—the crows caught and uncaught, hinged
against the wind. One hundred veils run behind
strands of curled hair, unkempt in hustle, as if
to catch and fall would mean begin again. Ahead,
no one in black waits upon some muscled steed.
Taffeta has seen this route before; heels swing in hand
as they slow and walk in ruts from past gypsy caravans. They move
slower. A preacher closes his Bible, miles behind, unmoved
toward the horde on this dirt, dandelion-waxed road
trodden underfoot. Run, run, run. Billowed plumes
of white, the lengths of skeins—migratory
geese, mistaken, or whorls of grandmothers’
hair. Though these women, some
men, are not white anymore because insects
and their attraction. How controlled the patterns
of flight. One hundred gold rings knuckled away. This road
bends to comfort the bouquets thrown aside, blooming
to a field of wild flowers, where sweat bees hum in
swarms then leave and return. Licks of salted
bodies are not enough for drones knowing more
from sweetness, from the colors they dash across all those eyes.