:: Article

Two Poems

By Jenny Hval.

Blood flight

I carefully rearranged my senses
so they could have a conversation.
Taught them to switch places;
from each pore in my skin grew shimmering eyes!
And fingerprints filled the eye sockets.

From the ears grew two tongues,
and I sang for people passing a strange song.
Told them stories without moving my li!ps
(Mouth half-open, still)
They assumed the words came from themselves;
these unfamiliar thoughts,

and I sang to them:
Aaaaaa Aaaaa Aaaaaaaaaaaaa.

Such is the speech of the body:
The ribs painted their fingernails.
(Black, of course)
And on the edges of the cunt
grew little teeth!
The clitoris, that great sphinx, opened its eye:
So many blind years, acting Oedipus.

Meanwhile the vocal chords were listening
for the wind howling,

whispering a familiar language of breath –
secret tales for them to learn.
Then from my veins came a strange itching,
and I felt a pull through the shoulder blades.
I should have seen it coming!
The blood was itching!
And etched a hole at the nape of the neck.
It flew out into the night
like a long, red ribbon to the sky.

And up we went, blood and I, spread over the city.
The dark sky lay against my skin,
So close –
like an eyelid.


Bring it back, for faen

Hello – excuse me!
I think you left something at my house – oh, yes – my virginity!
          BRING IT BACK.

He brought himself to me on a plate of raspberries and cherries and meringues and all that is sweet
and/or            AND/OR                    AND/OR
smells of girl.


How I laughed at him with a telephone voice.
Even though he was still in the room with me.
Oh, boy.
Ain’t you sweet?
You are full of fragments, full of emotional bones.

I dusted my coat and answered the phone.
But darned be that man – he never called.
Ain’t it sweet? He cooed pleasantly.
I hadn’t the time of day for him nor for me.

I think you left something at my house – oh, yes – my virginity!
          BRING IT BACK.


Jenny Hval is a Norwegian poet, writer, singer, composer and lyricist. She was born in 1980 in Oslo and studied Creative Arts in Australia at the University of Melbourne. She records and performs under the name Rockettothesky, releasing her debut on Trust Me Records, To Sing Me Apple Trees, in 2006 with the followup Medea released in 2008 (“the heady experimentalism of late-80s 4AD brought forcibly into the modern day” and “as beautiful as anything Cocteau Twins ever recorded” according to The Quietus). She has published her first novel, Perlebryggeriet (The Pearl Brewery) and will be appearing at the forthcoming 3:AM Maintenant Norwegian Poetry event at the Rich Mix, London (more details to follow soon).

First published in 3:AM Magazine: Sunday, August 29th, 2010.