First from denim pockets he’ll pull the wand—
enchanted lead to christen stark white page.
Movements swift, precise. A woman will choke
her first breath across wide snowy fields where pencil
point scratches her curved form. She’ll point
a toe toward spiral-bound abyss—
a prepared leap—awaiting his final strokes.
Her eyes bore through his own; she is alive
and she knows his worst name. Without warning, he’ll
surrender to her critical gaze—paper repel
pen—he tears her limb from limb.
Paper shards rustle as he gathers them—
shin to scrape rib, sent to burial
as scraps flutter atop sisters’ graphite bones.
John Mark Brown is a queer poet from Southern Illinois, a senior creative writing student at Eastern Illinois University, and a cardigan enthusiast. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in Indiana Review Online, Yellow Chair Review, Indiana Voice Journal, and Rat’s Ass Review, among others. He can be found embarrassing himself on Twitter: @johnbrownie13.