Kyle McCord

You Can’t Spell Necromancy Without Romance

It isn’t easy wandering the world eternally and scalping the progeny of the proud, but there’s a reason I picked you: I was bored. It was Wednesday. Wherever you walked people looked up. Your stride reminded them of the awkwardness of a bull locked in a coatroom and you’d have loosed yourself if only puberty had allowed. I felt for you: the slave ship docked in your iris, the seeds of anarchism you spit like spent matches on the ground. I imagined your turtleneck and tights box stepping around the room, your glasses flying in tight formation above. It’s unclear what the objective of the exercise was but it did remind me of some issues of delegation: I need you to go back to 1975 and eat an hors d'œuvre. I need you to tame a wild Taurus and teach Old Man Wilson a lesson about the white-hot light that is love. It’s a need-to-know sort of operation, you know? I look into your eyes and no longer wonder what makes any of us. Seventy-five impulses, eighty desperate demands, an old Guatemalan love song you heard coming home on eighth street. And hummed the three bars you knew while you put away beets and Peter’s Baked Beans. Your stubborn heart—the cave you shrank inside. Panning away till you were so blurry, it was impossible to tell the music’s origin. So small and blurry the apartment and inkblot sky could have been anything. And then they were.

Ginny in the Dutch Master’s Grove

Fourteen miles through storm-shattered forest you knotted your hair to your head like an uncharacteristically slight Eve. Did you know that the best translation of Adam is earthling? The razor beaks of the birds you sketched shredded afternoon, cawing while I examined how roots clawed from their birthplace to the unlucky world above— light which balds and the animals lapping their architecture. Like in the paintings of the Netherlands, it seems best to stick to the main thoroughfares the roads ragged where the swaths of dense acrylic nip at the frame. Greetings, earthling. I’m sure you tire of my constant questions, but I danced on my heart after you shot me that one small smile by the horses which seemed to wobble from the heat. Later, I primed one wall in the house, and all of a sudden, I saw the world as a series of frames anxiously awaiting pigment, light, aroma. You talked about your father, his unfed expectation, his Princeton education, and I thought how Bruegel can capture us in a space so black, not even goodness can find us. We want belief to fill us till we fall out of ourselves. It’s one of the hundred wrong reasons we marry. When we close our eyes, sometimes a voice spins us about. It seems everything in this forest is a small, paper ribbon of some sort.