Dear Government,
By Christine Reilly

(In response to your bulletin: “Southpawed sinful guttersluts,
they will die with honor only
to go to heaven and be seated on the left side of the Lord,
the gauche side, God’s unflattering angle. If their bodies
tell you anything it’s that they deserve to die for
mating in dirty, uncouth ways, their bodies will self-combust,
dirty dirty bleating defeated deleted heated
auto-immune deficiency syndrome
abused with intention, destined to sin”).

I am inside your country.
I will pretend that it’s merely
a crawlspace. Dear Government,
I am changing your official language,
religion, and bank holidays. Dear Government,
I am collecting parts of you (teabags, trinkets)
and selling them to tourists. Dearest Government,
I am writing down your minutiae, making lists of everything I eat.
My dear Government, I have an appetite for your
dollar bill and feel myself inflating. The co-morbidity
of your country’s obesity is profound
due to the wishes your citizens make. Every wish sticks
to the body, clings to the skin like suction cups. Darling
Government, I do not speak your language, and so
I am a child again. Dear Government, I am trying.
Dear Government, I am leaving.

Christine Reilly lives in New York City, is getting her MFA at Sarah Lawrence College and has been published in 41 journals.