Size / / /

Content warning:

Beyond the pale, the pallor
and slow-burn violet death:
the burrowing spiders,
backs the size of satellites,
orbiting your hair

a halo webbed and weaving
and electric bright
with roots of neon to spear inside
that soft spot under your ribs

they’ll tickle and preen,
tickle and preen

and yes I crushed a fistful of
mushrooms between my teeth
and lay on my bed
for six straight hours
stuck under this dark belly

looking up at legs gathered
together like popsicle sticks
hot-glued and holding
and her blood winding
its way through us like kudzu
looms into the flaked-rust hulls
of truck cabs that lay buried, lost,
their ghosts suspended in trees

my fingertips were all balsa and
my heart a dull, flat flame

I pressed the backs of spoons on the
hot eggs of my closed eyes,
I poured guava juice into the
pit of my throat

she smelled the sweet and reached
one long leg inside—
the curved hook at the end
pointing like a ballerina in flight



[Editor’s Note: Publication of this poem was made possible by a gift from Lisa Nohealani Morton during our annual Kickstarter.]

Amanda Mitzel is a poet and horror writer who conjures the dark in the mountains of north Georgia. She has had work published in Drunk Monkeys, The Esthetic Apostle, and Leveler. Her chapbook, We Are All Made of Glory & Soft, White Light is available from Bottlecap Press. You can find her at
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