Category Archives: Poetry

lament

why do groans not form in sentences? the wetness, red, curves by drooping eyelids, at the edge of tiny windows. prayers catch in the throat, droplets keep to themselves, faces, lined by tubes and tightened paper, are seen only in … Continue reading

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temptation

this world is not conclusion she writes – breathless cages for teeth to rattle, suspending the shudder of mourning flesh, the lacunae of unread distance. and he is still as it begins to nibble at the soul, the ache that … Continue reading

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ritual

always the same: sleep burrowed in the corners of the eyes, thin pages flipped in sacralised bed song, stillness cradled and rocked, mourned in the slow descent past auburn fur, the bitter of morning sips, teeth enfolding, and the sun, … Continue reading

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Chapare

Still digesting lunch’s red bananas and citron, having avoided poisonous ants on the long hike, I lean over the piranhas of the Chapare River, drape my hand in water as the boat speeds on. We pass by a ruined bridge, … Continue reading

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Epigenetics

A kiss discarded pell-mell into anarchic flames dredged from the human genome, tacked on secret frames— the insistence of causation— buttresses our frail elation. Cravings, interventions of hands, brain, waver in the aftermath, suspect given the environment’s influence on even … Continue reading

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The Wolf

Sprawled on a chaise longue slumbering, waiting, excised from routine, a notepad in his lap, fountain pen, crows canter in the void surrounding his body as traffic hisses a block away. Dressed in navy slacks and a white-collared shirt, form … Continue reading

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Rebellion

Just keep loading the gun or wild tigers will devour you, stomp on milk cartons, break into buildings, lead revolts, and other perturbations of disgraced tyros. Bells of holidays and felicitations unknown, carols that in their fervor have become untenable: … Continue reading

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Pilgrims

We are an immigrant caterwaul, a spectral bonfire of glass smoke and opaque heat. In our blood courses the flint and silver of antiquity, in our bones the ore of ancient machines. We span the Euphrates and the Seine. We … Continue reading

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Saturnalia

after Virginia Woolf’s Between the Acts Albeit disenchanted, unmoored, the generative probabilities subsist on meager praise, blush kittenish, tender no resignation, while forces of capitulation, scrolled on shields and doors, unhinged, rational, guard every exit. Desist or raise glass— rush … Continue reading

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Troubadours

We shall not dive into oceans or be obliterated by the sun. Our crimes of leisure and solitude will remain incomprehensible. One day we’ll explain our disdain for lizards and moths. Across the moon we’ll lay our shadows, both unseen … Continue reading

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Fall

I have seen nothing, but I have seen all. Blackberries rotted on a withered branch, small and inedible. Fire floating on the air above a wayward river. Without care wind harangues the trees. The difference between light and shadow wavers. … Continue reading

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May

A cricket’s milieu—dewy grass, fistful of dandelions, reconnaissance of nesting jays—has proceeded shadowy rain. Today the lily blooms, worms surface in dirt, clouds zoom like warmongers across a peacetime sky while soldiers linger in bed, nursing tea. Hares evade the … Continue reading

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Circle

Show us another way to be invisible, like rain that can’t fall, a mannequin holding a cane, a whip-poor-will without wings. Blame the raven for its execrations. Call the night by its other names. Lose all, even love. Let go … Continue reading

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The Giant Exhale

The winter exposes the bones of the landscape, the skeleton of the world. I have cried at the table because the meal brought me back to who I used to be. It was easier to put a dog down when … Continue reading

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I Just Want to Be a One-Star Hotel

My brother tells me I have dead doll eyes and complains that Wi-Fi is bad in Taksim the whole time. The bathrooms here look good although the shower door swings open of its own accord. He pounds the wrong key … Continue reading

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Two shapes

Sun and moon, perhaps, the same, separate, separable, but only just. Two lovers or two brothers, young boys, with horns and spikes: hedgehogs and cattle, perhaps. Two sisters intertwined, perhaps, above or below makes no odds, at peak in their … Continue reading

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Room to breathe

i. A piece of sharpness cries, lying triumphant and the long sadness weeps blue for the hurried night, it comes too soon. The fury of a blistered cant mellows. It lists solely. You chew your words for the green days; … Continue reading

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Artemis

i. As Artemis wept,             alone, alert,             we leapt.   ii. There is always an absence on the wall; a sunlit barren palette. We scrawl water figurines as the sun stalls over cobbled scenes. Childhood calls from a house made of … Continue reading

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The digging

The warm pollen sits heavy in the loam and the wet soil, wet and furious green all over. The infant watches with a child’s eye. Laughter is all around; the father idly sups, the mother digs, the children work the … Continue reading

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Here I Am

The night before we left             Iowa, we walked                         to the cemetery. You wanted to go all             week because you’d read                         about the black angel, that she’d kill you, so you wanted             to kiss her. You said we could write                         about … Continue reading

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North Haven

            for Ilana The apples here are all ripe and singing beautiful end of summer it is not July—having never kissed the earth I could not sing this wisdom still August finds you everywhere but here among cattails each morning I … Continue reading

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What Is Essential

Isabel Prioleau lives in Charleston, South Carolina. She interns for The Adroit Journal, and you can find her most recent work in The Post and Courier. Isabel was an attendee of the 2018 Juniper Institute for Young Writers and the … Continue reading

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Beatification, Canonization

            Name us impossible. If                         dead is prerequisite. If woman is                         things to bury in the neighbor’s lawn—                                     stained fingernails, glass, a bag of flour.             Peel away these stems,                                                 these leaves & we’re closer. If girl is the dirt.             This skin … Continue reading

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Letter From the North Haven Ferry

It’s raining or we’re crying—no one on the ferry’s met but there’s something we love about passing boats and passing each other so I’ll go on believing in our essential difference from the waves: our lack of constancy. I cannot … Continue reading

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Similar Twilights Are Seen on Earth

Isabel Prioleau lives in Charleston, South Carolina. She interns for The Adroit Journal, and you can find her most recent work in The Post and Courier. Isabel was an attendee of the 2018 Juniper Institute for Young Writers and the … Continue reading

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