My Mother Renames the Colors

by Amorak Huey

§ Nearby storm; or, a puckering of wind.

§ The heart, gratified.

§ Tangled-hair.

§ Encroaching city: parking-lot-in-summer.

§ Inhale, smoke, spark. 

§ Page by candleflicker.

§ Pond’s last water, evaporated. 

§ Radiosong, between stations.

§ The next morning; the oak uprooted; the spidering dirt.

§ Aching muscles, the work that made them.

§ The body; a body; not the only body.

§ Distant son.

§ Spinning planet, lost marble / the years it takes. 

§ Impossible sky.



____

Amorak Huey’s fourth book of poems is Dad Jokes from Late in the Patriarchy (Sundress Publications, 2021). Co-author with W. Todd Kaneko of the textbook Poetry: A Writer’s Guide and Anthology (Bloomsbury, 2018) and the chapbook Slash/Slash (Diode, 2021), Huey teaches writing at Grand Valley State University in Michigan.

Published
Categorized as Poetry

episiotomy poem

by Chiara Di Lello

I broke out of your body
they told you I had to

for years I knew nothing
of suture or seep – 

I believe the tale you tell 
of the male doctor who had
no faith in supple or stretch
and leapt instead 
for the certainty of slice

I left it wounded, the bone
cradle you wrapped around me

If it were me, opened 
and sewed up again
would the memory ever sound
like anything but blade?

If it were someone 
who did it, not something
would their face turned toward me
not always say knife?

behind my eyes turns
a tiny, vicious machinery
what you keep from me
moves the wheels

I broke out of your body
you tell me I had to
it happened to me
but I happened to you



____

Chiara Di Lello is a writer and teacher whose work has appeared in Best New Poets, Noble / Gas Qtrly, Little Patuxent Review, and Yes Poetry, among others. She delights in public art, public libraries, and biking through New York City.

Published
Categorized as Poetry

Abundance

by Lane Fields

The road cuts through halls of trees, snakes
through my hometown. See the signposts
for creeks and bisecting lanes named for broods

that never left the county. See tumbledown
two-room homesteads with John Deere
riding mowers chained to posts out back.

See stucco fortresses with their balustrade-lined
balconies and iron gates. See the fields
extend far beyond the view of the road,

acres stretching out and away from
developed land. See the blood-wet corpse
of a fawn in the gutter, its mother aching

somewhere in the clearing, surrounded
by birches, watchful owls, and hum of
cicadas, late summer’s abundant song.



____

Lane Fields is a queer, trans poet living in Boston and a student of the MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College. Lane’s poetry is forthcoming or has appeared in places such as Hobart, Yemassee, The New Southern Fugitives, and Tupelo Press’s 30/30 Project. You can follow Lane on Instagram at @lane.fields or Twitter at @ohwowitslane.

Published
Categorized as Poetry

River Suite

by Lane Fields

 
I.
 
as the body yields
to a knife, so the land
             cedes to the river—

II.
 
my body became the river,
wound-wet; gored by grace
             -ful fingers, subdued;
 
from my chest came
a congregation, flurry of white
             birds; my body ached
 
with its gift—

III.
 
I am suspended with
thirst for the river, I know
             all of its names;
 
I speak to it, tender as a
lover, & it does the same;
             it calls me back
 
to the boy I never was,
calls me beautiful with
             its hundred tongues,

calls me past the field
of forgetting, calls me
             home.



____


Lane Fields is a queer, trans poet living in Boston and a student of the MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College. Lane’s poetry is forthcoming or has appeared in places such as Hobart, Yemassee, The New Southern Fugitives, and Tupelo Press’s 30/30 Project. You can follow Lane on Instagram at @lane.fields or Twitter at @ohwowitslane.

Published
Categorized as Poetry

Margate Main Sands on Christmas Day

by Anna Harvey

Christmas, and I drip out of a borrowed raincoat
Glasses speckling tidal spray
I am hungover, and the walk is entirely failing
to blow the cobwebs away
The day is an unfinished line
unravelling itself into the horizon
I am a thread loose of its spool
I want to be a whole shell – want to
unfurl myself onto the sand: widen,
be as big as the great grey skies
reflected in the sea;
which only throws
my own roar
back at me

____

Dr. Anna Harvey is a medical doctor in Cumbria, England. 

Published
Categorized as Poetry

The Encounter

by Constance Hansen

I have abandoned
the desire to learn

the name of the woman
floating in my childhood

bathtub. The first time I asked,
she stepped out of her polka dot dress

and into a cloak of clamshells and kelp.
The second time, she just stood there

dripping saltwater on the bathmat.
The third time, her index finger rose

to her lips in warning gesture. I ran
into my brother’s room to swipe a soft

pack of Marlboro Reds in offering,
but when I returned, she was gone.

I wonder after her
no more or less often

than cathedral pigeons
shitting down a fractal staircase

marvel at the vanishing
miracle of math.



____


Constance Hansen is an editorial assistant at Poetry Northwest. Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming at Harvard Review Online and EcoTheo Review. She was a finalist for the 2021 Fugue Poetry Contest. Constance holds degrees from Middlebury College (BA Religion), The University of Washington (MFA Poetry), and Seattle University (Masters in Teaching). She lives in Seattle with her partner and young daughters.

Published
Categorized as Poetry

Meet Me

by Constance Hansen

At the edge
of the mistaken
lake. Meet me

at the edge
of the woods,
where water

only laps rocks
in the wind, which,
too, is moon-ruled.

Meet me under
the towering firs,
where girls hung

used tampons
by the tails, like mice
on a haunted

Christmas tree.
The sisters were weird.
They’d been saving

their fetid darlings
in film canisters
and ornamented

a wintering
rhododendron
with contagious magic

because they favored
the boy who slept
inside the window

it scratched. How
do I know this
is a confessional poem?

Because I was there.
Meet me at the edge
of memory & fantasy,

of childhood & adulthood,
of attraction & repulsion.
Meet me in the middle

of the lake that GPS
led the car deep into.
Meet me in a faith

such as that, however
terminal, however
misplaced.

Like the moon,
we float on water;
we’re always new again.



____


Constance Hansen is an editorial assistant at Poetry Northwest. Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming at Harvard Review Online and EcoTheo Review. She was a finalist for the 2021 Fugue Poetry Contest. Constance holds degrees from Middlebury College (BA Religion), The University of Washington (MFA Poetry), and Seattle University (Masters in Teaching). She lives in Seattle with her partner and young daughters.

Published
Categorized as Poetry

Lifesaver

by Cyndie Randall

Look down. See me on
the subway platform. Say
hello. Pick me up, undress me,
put me in your mouth. I taste
good and it's surprising, like
peaches and summer in your childhood
swing. Tuck me between lip
and gum. Say hold on,
we're going for a ride. Feel
young again. Climb aboard
the electric flash. Pucker your face
and suck more me out of me.
Bob your head and whistle. Whisper
I'm glad I found you.
Tell me I'll always be
with you. Swallow. Miss me.
Tongue the raw of your cheek.



____

Cyndie Randall’s poems appear or are forthcoming in Frontier Poetry, DIAGRAM, Crab Creek Review, Longleaf Review, Aquifer: The Florida Review Online, Pithead Chapel, The Pinch, and others. She works as a therapist in a small town near Lake Michigan and is also a poetry contributing editor at Barren Magazine. Find her on Twitter @CyndieRandall or at cyndierandall.com.

Published
Categorized as Poetry

(Starlight) (Cricket) Template

by Beth Gordon

praise all future near misses:

meteor shower: study group: windshield crack: sparrow bones: smoke detector: detonator: backyard  
swimming pool: 

flying tire: funhouse gunshot: 

              starlight earthquake: 

frog invasion: flood plain 
wasp nest: manhole cover: 

              local time of error: praise:

praise the preacher on endless loop:

praise all neighbors with ambrosia salad: praise the china plate:

                         recite her morning: cricket chatter: cricket light pole: cricket   
                         hop scotch: cricket cabaret: praise her handprint: hold her
                         raindrops: lemon snail: mud pond sailboat: hermit crab: jump 

the sidewalk: jump the mousetrap:
praise the lonely dog/			          praise the broken chain:



____

Beth Gordon is a poet, mother and grandmother currently living in Asheville, NC. Her poetry has been published in Passages North, EcoTheo Review, SWWIM, Into the Void, Pidgeonholes, Barren, Pithead Chapel, and others. She is the author of two published chapbooks and her full-length collection, This Small Machine of Prayer, is forthcoming in 2021. She is Managing Editor of Feral: A Journal of Poetry and Art, and Assistant Editor of Animal Heart Press.

Published
Categorized as Poetry

(Icebox) (Transmission) Template

by Beth Gordon

The easy bake oven covered in soot.
Battery-powered and uninformed. What
can be wound can be rewound and finger
printed. 		                Please place this doll into the crib	    (exactly)
as you did your child. Ignore the police
officers who dial back your thermostat: they are sweating and homesick for mother’s
icebox lemon pie. Do not memorize
badge numbers. Gather her seahorse her comb
her shoestrings her unflustered purple bear.
							                                   Howl.
Coyotes and neighborhood dogs will arrive and dig holes to the moon. Bury
broken radio parts that will never 
be unburied. Translate all transmissions.



____

Beth Gordon is a poet, mother and grandmother currently living in Asheville, NC. Her poetry has been published in Passages North, EcoTheo Review, SWWIM, Into the Void, Pidgeonholes, Barren, Pithead Chapel, and others. She is the author of two published chapbooks and her full-length collection, This Small Machine of Prayer, is forthcoming in 2021. She is Managing Editor of Feral: A Journal of Poetry and Art, and Assistant Editor of Animal Heart Press.

Published
Categorized as Poetry