The ground seemed so much farther away than usual. The soles slid on the carpet. She felt like a little girl in her mother’s high heels. She did not feel sexy.
Before I had my son, I thought I was too careless to be a mother. I had a bird for eight years that I’d gotten from a flea market as a gift. His cage was cleaned when my parents told me to clean it, his water bowl goopy and pink.
Always late, and always your sleeves carefully folded. A cat knows the sunny spot.
In the mornings he pulled on the trousers of the day but could not choose between his corn belt and his bible belt.
She asked me, “do you like Miss Donne?
You’re both girls. But my dad says that’s okay.”
Les just sit togeddah, we talk story.
Bum by Aunty sing a song, but fo now goin talk story.
Bout a beudeeful girl who wen bump her hed, jus like you.
she—having regained composure—messaged him: Your mother needs to know you are all right and she foolishly expected an immediate response
What’s needed now is bodies—
when the cold wind blows
Why didn’t I steal you
before doors were barred,
make a camp under the boughs?
we knew you were trouble, in the pits of our stomachs,
or maybe lower…
She waited for a gray-green tentacle to slither up from the water.
Their faces are very close;
it seems he is whispering to her.
So you’re not the Anadyomene — suck it up!
Too much pudica peek-a-boo
So they named you Mona Lisa,
as the song goes,
blather on about your smile.
bares one swollen breast-bud scored of real clay
Defenestration: to throw something out of a window.
“Baby, everything’s gonna be fine,” he says. “God has a plan for us, and I promise you, it ain’t death by burning.”
my bones a bell and my flesh a bell, my tongue a vibrating rhythm all its carpet own
what if I can’t travel with
oh you know
We fly over a trailer park
with empty slots, above-ground pools,
a Marriott with hourly rates
The run of a horse
is a gallop. Roam, rove
with restraint. Run those hounds,
those errands. Run your eye
down the list.
It was hairless and white, without visible scarring. It looked like there had never been an arm there at all, as if this were just a different way for a body to be constructed. It possessed a peaceful aura, Quinn thought.
There is that much shadow in her, that much dusk of an open earth.
We’re far from the seventeen flavors of hell I run across in the course of my week, things that are just never good: glue traps. outgrown swing sets. waiting rooms.
I wish for a reason
To remain whole
When all I want
Is to be dismantled
When the work is done
there will be more work. That’s what I show
the kids everyday
He wants her to believe he’s not fit for the world, no matter how well she’s tried to raise him, or what tools she’s given him. God is her witness, she’s tried hard.
Don’t let them into your head.
“I just hated everything about Trump in the beginning,” she admitted. “I couldn’t stand him at first. Nothing about him I liked. I prayed hard and a lot on the subject, and I believe he has truly obtained humility with the election result. I really believe that!” she said for emphasis.
I was pretty sure from what I’d heard in church that if I did black magic then I’d be cursed by God. Just look at what happened to Kurt.
The other kids told the teacher
She’s carving satanic symbols on her stuff.
Karma’s an elegantly disguised bitch these days, mon ami
When you were born,
Mom cussed the nurses.
When you kiss me, the distance peels
her fingers from the south,
shoves hemispheres into my mouth.
When someone you’ve had sex with hundreds of times compares you to a flimsy, transparent mechanism made for stopping insects, you have to examine yourself.
Let’s grow up together
And forget to pay the rent.
I leaned in to kiss his forehead. Please, just another day, another month, I thought. Was a year too much to ask for?
your bodice choked with tulle
in this cathedral silence
Let’s check our phones,