John Paul Davis

John Paul Davis  lives in Brooklyn, where he writes poems. You can find out more about him at


Two Poems (December, 2014. Issue 48.)

Outside Of Poetry

The sublet was a single room, clawfoot tub
in the kitchen, twin bed up in a loft,
the white metal table just big enough
for two. The toilet was out in the hall.
Yet the light seemed to come from everywhere
& nowhere at the same time. Paradise,
because we weren't expecting it. We shared
meals, towels, toothbrushes. Love was a surprise
as it always must be, like the shower
three feet from the stove, possible because
improbable. The sirens at all hours,
the radiator hissing, the weird thuds
in the ceiling. Love. Mahira talking
on the phone to her mother. Me reading.

Ode To The Bite Mark You Left On My Right Shoulder

Oh the blood, first responder
to the body's emergencies
blooming along the borders
of where your jaw bore down
leaving a little oxbow
of indigo & rose,
my skin, welted, on high alert.

You growled into me as you bit,
gone animal. My flesh
now barking, throbbing
with this nebula
in the shape of the birthplace
of all your speaking.

Five days I'm branded.
We walk on cobblestones,
searching out food neon
evenings & they don't know,
none of the people we pass
can see the delicious bruise
just under my shirt

announcing I'm yours
surely as if you'd burned
my lips with a hot coal.
I touch & touch the soreness,
lusting after the sting.

It reminds me there's a blurring,
a tangling of wanting
& being wanted, the holiness
when they are the same thing

when, if I could choose I'd choose
your incisors again, I'd offer
up my skin, unbroken
for your to endanger

so I could walk next to you after,
all my body's bells ringing,
knowing I'd just been under the mercy
of your wild & brilliant mind,
your thin & strong fingers,
your filthy & royal mouth.

The Legendary