/emily corwin

What a curse: how I hate to be touched at all—a boiled-hard
shell, a bell jar of birthday smoke.

/genevieve pfeiffer

With or without him, a glass next to the bed. A compulsion I turn toward each morning.

/jai hamid bashir

I know / lichens and mushrooms, I’m sewn / in their quietest tongues. Grief is a stillness

/ross white

Myth: The lilac cries salt. / Fact: When you are outside, / the gardens darken

/lauren swift

I keep the small, sustaining things near: / a kettle, a stone, a blanket /
for my fingers to fiddle with—

/em j parsley

you are too young to understand that his hands shouldn’t move like that and you shouldn’t breathe like that. you did not know until you laid next to a sleeping woman for the first time

/natalie vestin

I try to think of gentleness but instead imagine floods, soaked and rumbling riverine earth.

/eneida alcalde

When you finished coring out his bones, you climbed his battered spine, creeped near his ear and whispered the first of many lies