Size / / /

I stand in a cell for suffrage.
I sit, I succumb to sleep.

I am sensible of grasses,
the structure of grasses,
how grasses affect bison,
and therefore, us.

My stomach clamps down
to the size of an egg.
I’m beyond hunger now.

I think about grasses,
study grasses from this cell,
stuffed with suffering for suffrage,
my sisters sighing like grasses.

I imagine someday sorting grasses
in the fields, thinking of this cell
only sometimes, only sporadically,
shakily. The grasses stop me
from becoming despondent.
They save me from despair.

Jessy Randall’s poems and stories have appeared in Strange Horizons, Asimov’s, Nature, and Scientific American. Her most recent book is Mathematics for Ladies: Poems on Women in Science (MIT, 2022). She is a librarian at Colorado College, and her website is
Current Issue
26 Feb 2024

I can’t say any of this to the man next to me because he is wearing a tie
Language blasts through the malicious intentions and blows them to ash. Language rises triumphant over fangs and claws. Language, in other words, is presented as something more than a medium for communication. Language, regardless of how it is purposed, must be recognized as a weapon.
verb 4 [C] to constantly be at war, spill your blood and drink. to faint and revive yourself. to brag of your scars.
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