1. What is your name? Any preferred name?
  2. Beautiful name. How do you—sorry, I’m too American, I’ve lost the mother tongue        say it again so I can pronounce it correctly
  3. Where were you        born? Time and place
  4. That’s very far        away from here        relatives?
  5. Mother, father, two sisters.        What are they like—
  6. You at all? One sister is and       you don’t talk to the other anymore. I see now please
  7. Describe the place you grew up        where you came from
  8. Your childhood room?        You say it always smelled like blackberries,
  9. Tart, wallpaper peeling down in strips
  10. Of candy—you liked candy? A sweet tooth. Favorite flavor? 
  11. Passion        fruit. A texture of blasting bomb…bursting upon your lip. Oh, not lip
  12. You said limp…you had a limp. How did you get it,
  13. Accident or youth? Both         you got it from both (you say you were injured jumping off a fence         no, no, I’ll leave it off the record)
  14. A bad limp is not        very attractive         did you have a soft
  15. Smile to make up for it         You were courted despite the limp! That’s sweet…a smile and 
  16. A boy to kiss you too, did you get         this necklace from him?        You did        you peeled oranges for him        split them in two and gave yourself the smaller half. Where is this boy now?
  17. Dead? Dead. How many        years ago        did you last     
  18. See him? Did you ever marry       no, you don’t know why and
  19. You didn’t see him again, but maybe you dreamed? You did. On your knees in the dark        inert on the ground        you dreamed. Of what? Simple breakfasts and quiet mornings, you say        but
  20. You never had a tongue of your own, you had to cut it by yourself…
  21. Then why did you come here?        Ellis Island, want of opportunity        sifting for purpose        getting away from shadows that spoke to you at night
  22. but…yes, yes, I see. You never knew what       you worked for
  23. Kids? Any kids of your own        a daughter        to remind you of the boy you kept close. Just one daughter, that’s
  24. The worst        you poor girl, poor girl with child        duplicate piece of redmeat ripped from your heart, so        does your daughter love you?        No, she is swept away, drifting drunk on currents of freedom…I’m sorry.
  25. What’s that     can you repeat that?     oh, I apologize for the chill. Your fingers must be
  26. So cold     shivering without any warmth. The heating doesn’t work in this room, we’re just renting the space out for the month
  27. That should be better I just        called them up to come fix the unit
  28. And what of peace? Is there peace        here        for you, for anyone 
  29. or is the world more
  30. silvery and senseless?
  31. You’re trembling…you don’t know the answer to that question. 
  32. No worries, I think we can        stop here.

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