Elegy for the Ignorance of Nudity

Elegy for the Ignorance of Nudity

by Kristina Martino

originally published in Bateau Literary Magazine


To put things in perspective, the cosmos is commonplace,
comprising a similar politics of implosions and cease-fires and

expansion. As such, the earth is a placard that defaces the grand
scale and I live there and so does my mind and along with it hyper

awareness of how miniscule a space I occupy but not in truth
all the time. Sometimes I revere various plastics and ponder what

are the symbols that will save me and where can I buy them.
The celestial bodies bedazzle in such dizzying fashion who has time

to think of them all the time when I need new placemats to eat
on. Then there’s the matter of feeding the poor which brings me

to the ultimate problem: I am an awful person and I am alive. I,
I, I, yes, I know. I am derived from the I and I can’t help it, it’s I

all the time. Such is pollution binding itself to once cleaner air,
purity gets rarer and more rare as the timeline kicks up dust. It’s

kinetics, this cluttered occupancy of a mind in time and out then
back in again when corporeal concerns take over, as in have I caught

something viral? Sure, having pneumonia is old news but tell that
to my body and its brevity. I’ll go buy a scrub brush for further mending,

a loofah to prime my birthday suit, don’t laugh, don’t let go, nor let
yourself go, because you’re here until you can no longer be nude.


Kristina Martino is a poet and visual artist. Her poems have appeared in Third Coast, Bennington Review, Bateau, Memorious, Yalobusha Review, Best New Poets, and elsewhere. She has received fellowships from The Iowa Writers’ Workshop, The Fairhope Center for the Writing Arts, and The Corporation of Yaddo. Some of her drawings can be viewed here: www.kristinamartino.com