The Anatomy of
a Childhood Home
I find a beetle the same cavernous color as the road
where I sit down to spill my lunch once a week
snorting cocaine underneath the kitchen sink
there is soft lip biting
tongues move like blood ribbons
underneath waning gibbous lighting
stars shove us up the ladder
a fizzy dizzy dance
my hips have no more padding
the attic is filled with frogs
croaking and creaking
I come down to familiar family songs
spitting up flies at night
quiet hiding, picking too loud fighting
boiling meat until my clothes shrink
winding down past motherhood
nicotine sour teeth, nipples blistered pink
my head has cracked open the black hole sink
The lily and the peony
in the vase atop our formica table
whose drooping heads are petted,
sniffed for their fragrance
amidst the stagnant air.
I feel sorry for their loneliness,
surely they must miss
the clovers and dandelions
who laugh in bunches
unbothered by the bees
smelling the sweet spring air.
Only when I began
to walk alone on
many a cold winter morning
could I learn to see
the beauty in the cool clods of earth
crumbling between my fingers
the patch of mottled moss
and petrichor ambiance.
Did I find love hidden in the
knotted lanes and overgrown creeks
running the veins of -
not the oak nor the maple
but the unnamed lance.
Only then could I stand to glance
at the echo that fell on
Throughout the past year, our society as a collective has been going through changes, rough ones especially.
There has been a gradient of good and bad; from quick bursts of happiness to heartbroken moments that leave our souls torn.
In this issue, we wanted to explore those shades of emotion and showcase that even in times such as these, you can still find the beauty in the gradience of it all.
Hyacinth and Apollo
Hyacinth is what they call me, a beautiful young prince of Sparta, the beloved of Apollo, whose entire life was reduced to
the luminescence of youth spent basking in the attention
of my paramour.
-a throw meant to scatter the clouds- finding its target in my skull.
my body limp and clutched tightly against my lover’s chest.
In your radiance I am reborn.
I sprout from the blood
spilled by your hand
that has soaked the earth.
My long stem grows
blindly toward your light.
Eternally I am reaching for you
-absorbing your rays- but I
am shackled to the earth,
so as I bloom my purple petals openly bare themselves to you
stained in drops of yellow
inscribing your guilt ridden despair, and relaying our story to the sky.
Everything’s ok now, Everything’s forgotten,
as the days go by, I don’t put much thought in.
Mundane as I seem, sometimes I want to scream.
Sometimes I want to cry a little, it might help me by a little.
Why do those sick thoughts taunt me everyday?
Though I push them to go, they all want to stay-
all of them uninvited guests in my brain
all of them going by different names
all of their sole purposes the same-
every one, condemning me to shame.
And the worst is, they all know my name.
It was my fault, greeting them at the door,
Remorse, Lament, and there’s just a few more:
Anguish and Pain are the next in line,
okay, I think I can deal with them and be fine.
Here comes Regret and his brother, Resent,
although they look the same, they are very different.
More of them come to round the group out
but I can’t keep them all in check, in fact I’ve lost count.
Loving you is like pulling deer teeth
—nobody would think to but me,
certifiable me, who weeps over hermit
crabs and spilled mango. Bughouse
me, who can’t tell the difference
between tiger balm and fiberglass.
Moonstruck me, who thinks
with a bedsheet I can fly.
Used as house windows, men think them
easily replaceable but when changed
are always missed as
the original fit best.
Like sea glass,
jagged edges of beer bottles
smashed in a rage are
smoothed over by the
calm affection of waves.
Seen as glass cases
perched in a museum, people
come to awe and wonder over
what they claim a
while they view her inside worth
less than dirt,
even as she holds
gold plated ideas and
for all to see.
They are stained glass windows
in the cathedrals.
Pictures are painted and polished
into her melted sand fragments,
though only there to embellish
men’s own glory.
when the sun shines through
her forcefully broken
shards, a rainbow is cast in
tinting a room that
believes her inferior
with the strength of
We bore down on the highway,
in a Ford adorned
of trips we’d taken Before.
Silent hours evaporated
between your father and I.
The air inside was a wet towel,
soaked with the newness
of our triad.
We drove through the Illinois
countryside in a cornfield trance:
a man with new worry lines,
shuffling through playlists
for his old favorite songs,
a baggy-eyed woman, scrolling
through other people’s reviews:
the Top Things To Do in the City,
and you, our mystical cherub
cum carnivorous houseplant,
sleeping newborn sleep,
stinking up the back seat.
The weather went rainy
two hours outside Chicago.
We didn’t think much of it,
until the sky turned violent green.
The car began to rock
in the wind.
Instantly we were strangers,
trapped in an elevator,
The tempest was endless.
Your atheist father implored
his fingers gripped the wheel
against the force of gray torrents.
I could see the outline
of his forearm muscles;
I choked on
my own screams.
And then you started to howl.
I climbed towards you,
was thrown as we swerved.
I don’t remember doing it,
but I made a bottle.
Somehow measured formula,
I swear I saw a twister touch
down across the fields.
You latched onto the fake nipple,
like a nun holds a rosary.
That milk was gravity,
and with every covetous suckle,
you demanded survival.
You made the car so heavy, with it,
you kept us from spiraling
into the eye of the storm.