​​H E R M E N E U T I C   C H A O S   J O U R N A L

L A U R I N    D e C H A E 

Laurin DeChae is a M.F.A. candidate for poetry at the University of New Orleans, where she acts as the associate editor for Bayou Magazine. Her work appears or is forthcoming in Harpur Palate, Cleaver Magazine, burntdistrict, Rust + Moth & Crack the Spine.

M U T T   I N   M U L T I P L E

“Here the Dormouse shook itself and began singing in its sleep, “Twinkle, twinkle, twinkle, twinkle—’ and  went on so long that they had to pinch it to make it stop.” 
                                                                                                                                                    —Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland 

The last time I saw you I was cut and spread against backdrops 
befitting queens. The last time I saw you I made my ends meet
by curving into a circle. You can’t hit what’s been hollowed.

In this moment I have no idea where I am twinkling. 
Who had I been, here before, turned and turned. This is my body 
projecting astral against a blue screen. Here I dissolve. Wreck

less leaving. The last time I saw you I was creature, fur and fluff, 
but I contain notes emblematic of what is lyrical, 
what is epic. Admit     you’ve wanted to know     what you’re insides
look like cut and spread    like a meat platter      slices fanned.    I have too.    
That’s why   I pick back   the scabs to peek at pink.     A great many know 
that bright incarnadine      like the name pleased         to depend upon. 

There I go    down the rabbit hole        in a slipstream of blood     muscle,     marrow.
Maybe I’ll thread my fingers     with tendons     pluck stringy tunes 
to tap my foot to.     to sing     the last time I saw you    I     I    

had to admit     I know nothing.     You must be here     proved to resist, 
to begin.     The universe opens up to me, sprawled     on my mouthy
floorboards. No matter what you do they just keep         pushing back. 

In a time when such broad terms could be construed there is         a need
to set limits. On one hand     I am transcendent and lasting,
On the other, violent and extremely flammable, a shallow

filled up with imperfect shapes that narrate the light seeping away. 
On a personal note, I wish to add my apologies 
of remembering this: The last time I saw you, I became 

cave. I snatch up the gaps between to inhabit my own blackness 
the only way, the only way, the only way I know how.
On a personal note, you were the pulpy constellation 
at the bottom of every glass and I haven’t washed them since.