Dennis Hinrichsen

[schema geometrica] [ON THE SCORPION AMBITION OF MONEY]


               —I breathe indiscriminately // I kill the same //

but money // what little of it I have // is laser-guided // 
key-stroked out of my accounts to bloody many (at least to me)
hidden elsewheres // —O scorpion in the brain I love you //
you are the shape of my net worth // curve & sting
of my ambitions // how you ebb & flow with the loneliness
of oceans // an abstract plankton of commerce & corrosion
that maintains my 3% // —O euro & yen // British pound sterling //
how you see me leaving darkened rooms // hands dripping
in wealth that somehow is fouling the world // I must
be complicit // taste of coal in my lungs // entire species
going extinct in the pool of my eyes // humorous once //
a glassy joyous vitreous // now just veined with murderous silks //
—O dollars I will serve you // I need your fire & your contaminants //
I will drag them like the raiment they are to king & queen

my broken street 
[schema geometrica] [W/BLOOD IN IT & A DELIRIUM]


                            [insert latest IHME Projections here]


                  —I breathe indiscriminately // I kill

the same but the blood on my hands is not this blood—
a cytokine storm killing lung killing liver killing
vessel kidney heart // —O ICU deliria
the television catheter burns here too w/visions
of snakes & saws to the brain // hallucinations so real
they are daylight on a bathroom floor I cannot
explain // spasms of time I keep
churning through // sips of air—morning—numbed
& countless // un- coma-ed // I scrub face
(knowing there is death in it & names) pour coffee 
(más muerte y nombres) (mas nombres) endure
commercial breaks long enough in toto to ink
at least one word (shame) near one shallow bone
where skin is tenderest—is money—is payback—
but not my narrow wrist // inner thigh //
ankle // stomach // top of foot

—not this skin

***

Dennis Hinrichsen is the inaugural winner of the Wishing Jewel Prize from Green Linden Press for his book schema geometrica, which will appear fall 2021. His previous work includes [q / lear], a chapbook also from Green Linden Press, and This Is Where I Live I Have Nowhere Else To Go, winner of the 2020 Grid Poetry Prize. He has new poems appearing or forthcoming in American Poetry Journal, Canary, I-70 Review, The Night Heron Barks, Map Literary, Misfit, Otoliths, and The Pinch. He lives in Lansing, Michigan where from May 2017 – April 2019 he served as the area’s first Poet Laureate.