Poor Claudia published poetry, prose and conversations online and in print from 2009 to 2018.

Heather Napualani Hodges

Four Works

  • There Are The Sounds In Nature That Keep Us Up At Night
  • Dangershine
  • There Is Nothing Wrong With Your Face
  • A List Of Eight Unclean Animals

There Are The Sounds In Nature That Keep Us Up At Night

Nature suits
Nature does well by us

We showed affection by climbing into it.
In the woods a body bleats.
That brief trumpet.
Can keep for several days.
In the woods everything that happens to you happens repeatedly. What allowed you to see trees where there were none. This happens repeatedly.
On the wall, one elephant.
On the wall, one elephant.

Birds are an example of something precise.
The trees they live in shake.
Direct attention elsewhere.
But we live in a world where most things are like fish.
When something stops moving it's dead. When something stops moving it develops. Mouths you can't believe and patience, which can be deceiving.
Like how a beak is a mouth, but sharper.
I went to the doctor who told me there was nothing wrong with me.
There is no wind inside you,
no fundament. Your rubbing hasp is for keeping warm.
But did you know, in the face were capacities?
Click. Capacities. Click. Capacities.
In the face were all these children planting lettuce out back.
The hope tic, what doubles as gesture. Movement a body makes when no one is looking.
Obscene. The things we can't help.
Twice a day our mouths opened,
let out a little light.


Things keep dying inside us
a room opens. A field.
I find myself swinging in some patches of unkind trees.
I am an unkind fruit in the unkind
light. When I swing,
it is also unkindly.
Hunger bean, they say, oh tender little.
What extended itself from you was not you. So do not go skipping,
do not bring hand to cheek.
There is no comforting the animal
is there.
It drags the body to the woods.
Leaves behind one small hole
for glinting.

There Is Nothing Wrong With Your Face

Narcissus in the houseplant,
who has the grief. Narcissus, who is chastised,
did not tend to it.
My beast is bored.
Just a lake to lie in.
Grace that begets the grace
we learned to resemble.
Resemblance makes us beautiful.
Narcissus would agree.
But people are horror,
you said to me once,
in that they develop.
True. The face wants to eat
what the face wants to touch.
Nature willed us so.

A List Of Eight Unclean Animals

Grace that begets the grace,
this was how we learned to resemble.
Banshee in the field. It felt normal
to pursue. Mother is mostly hair, anyway.
Not even the lung going
Boom pah
the room admits.
Not even the bell.
Most likely
I am a bestiary.
(I might be brimming)
Beside the point, doctor says.
Show me your egg tooth.
Can't, I say. Egg tooth is private.
Luminous, but nothing belongs to me.
Inherit mother's piano hands. At night we tuck them down
into flowers for sleep. Flowers. Prettiest word.
Consider the tiny nether pants.
The body contains
by definition
some half-sad
incalculable things.
Look just like her, father says, when it's still —
your face.

But a face is a circle, a face is a hole.
Like how in the hand
a hand. In the hand another hand.
Whoever has the grief is made
I overheard the neighbors talking. Deep inside us lived this lake.
This idea of seeing I think is good, sound.
It replaces what keeps you up at night.
The possibility of this lake.

Heather Napualani Hodges

Heather Napualani Hodges is like you. But part of her bottom lip is dead. She teaches Intro to Poetry Writing at Portland State University, where she received her MFA in Creative Writing. Available for creative writing consulting and sandwiches. Email her at: heather dot napualani @gmail dot com.