Size / / /

I come to you from a realm of incessant storms,

gowned in the shreds of an inadequate umbrella.

What happened to my hair? It kept getting snarled

into the filigree hilts of godmothers' wands, or stuck

in the icing on half-baked cottages, or wound

itself into nooses around already-netted fish. There

was nothing to do but to crop it all off. Loose, it promptly

smothered an acre of corn. When even the crows

can't wait to see you gone, it's time to shove

what's left of your life into a walking shroud

and cobble together what you can

from the pelts and bones of out-raced rabbits,

the better to greet whatever's next in store

with the treadlessness of a ghost, but even when

my fingertips graze only stone and tin,

my breath bruises fruit and my words ruin wells.

I've been told there are cures, but what I've heard

always ends with a witch in the fire

or the pond. I won't do that

to someone else's grandmother. And now

you have someone to blame for next week's blight

and next month's horror—I

am marching away even as you slam your door.

Peg Duthie shares a house in Nashville, Tennessee, with a brown dog and a piano tuned a half-step high. Her poems have appeared in Dead Mule, flashquake, and elsewhere, and she owes Heisenberg's ghost a round. You can find her poem Some Houseguests Can't Be Helped in our archives.
Current Issue
18 Sep 2023

Ama’s arm rested protectively around the girl’s shoulder as the giant bird glided above, its head angling right to left. Violet-black wings soared across a cloudless sky, blocking the sun’s midday rays and swathing sections of the village in deep shadow. Given its size, this argentavis was one of her first, but too far above for her to differentiate by name. Even across the distance, Ama could feel its heartbeat synced to hers, their lives intertwined until death.
She is leaving the world that is pink with desire, on her gray cardboard rocket ship.
Friday: Cursed Bunny by Bora Chung 
Issue 11 Sep 2023
Issue 4 Sep 2023
Issue 28 Aug 2023
Issue 21 Aug 2023
Issue 14 Aug 2023
Issue 7 Aug 2023
Issue 31 Jul 2023
Issue 24 Jul 2023
Issue 17 Jul 2023
Issue 10 Jul 2023
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