relearn eating with my fingers
spit betel-red
pots spit oil
callused curry leaves pursed chilies cardamom pods
rest on the plate lip
fished from rice and vegetables
swimming in dark oily sauce
my finger prints burn and turn
turmeric pollen yellow
lodging where I have gnawed my nails
ripped my skin
along loud shoulders along cluttered streets
vertebrae knobbed like tamarind fruit
sliced beets and tomatoes assemble flesh
secretly I smear stripes
over radius ulna
a question mark
behind each ear cumin asafetida
fenugreek delivering my sleep
the color of color

About the Poet

Agatha Beins teaches in the Department of Women's Studies at Texas Woman's University, rides her bicycle around Denton, TX, and spends time volunteering at an amazing local farm. You can find her work in journals such as The Laurel Review, Blackbird, Pebble Lake Review, Newfound, Devil's Lake, Sinister Wisdom, and Women: A Cultural Review.