À La Carte: Waning Gibbous

1
Google: How early do girls masturbate?
in her eighth year / maybe earlier / low tides birthed: a lotus / splitting legs / to conch shell murmurs / she
swirls / her lotus / chews mattress / her lotus / bends pillow / her lotus / rubs its cheek / against raggedy
Anne / repetition sharpens / her lotus / petal / into blade / petal tears / knitted crotch / crotch spills / cotton
/ spills / from mute dolly / yet / no cotton / will enter girl / enter lotus / tampons are phallic / kabardaar

2
Google: How common is it?
shereef larki /
i thought / i was / near extinction / until /
cousin-sister / practiced liar /
would emerge from cupboard / flushed from urgency /
i demanded to smell / velocity / on her fingertips /
prove to me / no monopoly / for little boys / to fiddle with / plusher parts /
endocrinologists say / excess androgens / cause acne / cause facial hair / cause sexuality? /
no /
there is no man inside of me / neither woman / just-me-just-me-just-me /
lotus / pink / cotton / petal / brown / finger / tip / toe / tip / toe / around /
gyrating swans / pirouette / of sinning / brown women /
i am / the giant clit in the room / i am / Sita in exile /
a sage of / epileptic climax / in service of / body electric /
powered by / lunar cycles /
every moon / dies /
and rises /
inside

3
Exam: How is the hymen broken?
1. the jazz splits
2. the downward dog
3. self-taught guitarist
4. a boy
5. a girl
6. a digit
7. a thirst
8. BMX
9. sin
10. excavation
11. the beach
12. (does anyone have a tampon?)
13. i don’t know
14. i’m not supposed to know

Kiran Bath is a poet and essayist from Brooklyn by way of Sydney. She is a 2019 Poets House Fellow and has received fellowships and support from Brooklyn Poets, Winter Tangerine and Kundiman. Her work has been short listed for the Peach Gold in Poetry, long listed for the Palette poetry Prize and nominated for the Best of The Net. Her writing appears or is forthcoming in wildness, Voicemail Poems, The Adroit Journal and elsewhere. Kiran spends her spare time conversing with the night sky and searching for decent okra to cook with.