A Forgery of History by Sasha West

Shake off       that narrative     of the world.

Enough.       Just enough.       Keep

that part.         Zoom in     and     blur.

Then make         the book         about disaster

your religious text.       All it does         is name

the fires.          Drill your way                  through

the ocean         the factories           the graves.

Reward yourself       with a slick         drink

of oil.              I’m not telling     you

anything                  you don’t already know.

The voices below            your window       shout:

Neither here, nor       elsewhere. Be seen       to be

honest and trustworthy.         After all, I am

going to leave                my child         with you. You

will rock her to sleep             in the shale.

Already you are       whispering         in her ear

your long tale                of ever-increasing         growth.
Sasha West’s first book, Failure and I Bury the Body (Harper Perennial), was a winner of the National Poetry Series and the Texas Institute of Letters First Book of Poetry Award. She is an Associate Professor of Creative Writing at St. Edward’s University in Austin, TX.