Meliz Ergin Poems

 

 

 

conspiratio*

 

I became interested in the mechanics of breath

 

In the exact number of seconds spent inhaling

Unkind references to the body

 

The amount of oxygen

Required to exhale

 

obsessive ideal

 

 

I was intrigued by strategies for optimal breathing

 

How mouth breathing creates a carbon dioxide deficit

Preventing oxygen to get to the cells

 

Causing a chemical imbalance that leads one

To say things like sky-is-the-limit

 

s.ky.is.the.li.mit

 

 

I reckoned the amount of vapor produced by one mouth

 

Speaking conquest below -15 degrees celcius

And wondered whether fractures formed

 

By such acts of respiration are pleasant

And can be considered

 

commodity

 

 

I wondered if perhaps respiration is history

 

And history a delicate exchange of gases

Condensed into explosive linguistic units

 

Air-dropped on the wild territories of the mind

Engendering unprecedented impacts such as

 

warlords parochialism organizational charts military entrepreneurs

 

 

      if perhaps in every breath the world is recaptured

 

By lungs carving space in the rib cage

To filter the air exhaled by other lungs

 

In body caustic indifferent pacified

That perhaps this makes me

 

accomplice

 

 

 

* Latin word conspiratio: 1. breathing together / 2. plotting together; unanimity / 3. an agreement between two or more people to commit an act prohibited by law or to commit a lawful act by means prohibited by law

 

 

 

**

 

 

Meliz Ergin lives in Istanbul and teaches comparative literature at Koç University. She pursued her graduate studies in Vancouver, where she co-founded the Play Chthonics Reading Series and collaborated with the now defunct poetry collective Vertigo West. Her poems appeared in Bone, Locuspoint, Interim, and The Enpipe Line.

 

 

 

 

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