White Box

Of Tribulation, these are They,
Denoted by the White.
— Emily Dickinson


Pained, permanent
wakefulness

Exposed
in the split geode

a Santa’s grotto
Jagged milk

quartz crusts
constitute

every surface —
a mouth

all teeth
self-sharpening

like sea urchins’ —
“Uncomfortably beautiful”

toughened glass
spikes

in the doorways
of award-

winning offices
 — rough

sleepers from the womb
condemned

to make of anything succulent
rock

of porticoes
iron maidens
More Poems by Frances Leviston