Aerik Francis

Growing & Positioning Systems (GPS)

“I’m going look for my body yeah/ I’ll be back real soon”
-Solange Knowles
what is in [this] finite wonder full body but a map
to a home that itches & improvises?
our heads, our hair each keys & paths
to ourselves, layered membrane.
digits five & five tend body expanses
teeming in memory & texture.
read tomography in touch & GPS trust
gut bubbles as butterfly & cardinal.
each sense a direction & each scent a message
desperate to caress trajectory into flesh like lotion.
hair braided bosque & shea into compass rose
crowned in code & cartography, wrapped in
emerald satin. ruby stitched skin blanketed
in pimpled topography & thimbleless thumbs.
armed & equipped barber razor, nocturnal buzzing
grid to scalp to shadow fade legendary:
line-up spans forehead prime meridian,
edges sprout curl & coordinate formation.
dry dandruff flakes fall as bread crumb trails
as routes to roots & bare fruit.
as is lymph node, as erogenous
zones, as knee caps & finger
tips along dermal margins & purple bruises
desperate to impress each & every location:
the bounce & the grease – the crusting
decay of busting bud & zit. the cysts
benign reminders of cycles sublime. what are sweat & tears
but drops of pin? but salt circles? but clepsydra water clocks?
And us but vessels who keep losing
our ways, only finding fresh And intimate questions
Aerik Francis is Queer Black & Latinx poet based in Denver, Colorado. Recently, he was the 2019 Amiri Baraka Scholar for SWP at Naropa University, and has work published in Spit Poet Zine and TSPJ.