Features

Illustration: Kelsea Shore.

Cancer is cold like water
far out to sea, so cold the
sun’s kisses get lost like
my feet inside the prints
vanishing in the forest.
My soul space stops,
forgets to scream.
The heart is a dying
bird, raging for life
wildly in its cage of
ribs. Blue shudders
flake green, rusted
pain off as fish gasp,
the redness of space.
Fish swim in water
without being aware
they are fish, or there
is water, water is
consciousness as are
fish. We are such fish.
Pain is hot white hard
deep angry cold full.
I tuck myself inside
the envelope we call
a hospital and breathe
barbed wire for my
keening child.
I squeeze my eyelids.
Trees come off walls in
museums in New York;
I take the city but leave
you by the yellow curb.
How do you surrender?
I imagine a heron and
meditate on Kandinsky.

Aerie Carmichael, English graduate student.