“I Dream of Rope” by Jennifer Mac-Bain Stephens

skinny legs scamper / no door to open this time / we’re in the woods / we always do dessert / no sleep only naps / think of two thick fingers down a throat / she’s not supposed to like / instead / the possession radiates / one hand around a windpipe she thinks of an old gray movie / culled bedroom / ocean waves back to how he lifted her up like a tin can/ half dropped to catch midair / kneel and rise / the quiet except for simplicity / how she bled / her chest felt bruised later / soreness / ngers again / grasping the wrist with the light reddish brown hairs / the thickness of the tree branches / twigs caught cracks by mouths / summoned crows to land / called them home / the noise not in her head / justagasp / and the noise is quiet when she remembers the forearms / the knots


Jennifer Mac-Bain Stephens is the author of two full length poetry collections: Your Best Asset is a White Lace Dress, (Yellow Chair Press, 2016) and The Messenger is Already Dead (Stalking Horse Press, March 2017.) Her work has been nominated for Best of the Net and the Pushcart Prize. She is also the author of nine chapbooks. Her chapbook “She Came Out From Under the Bed,” (poems inspired by the films of Guillermo del Toro) is forthcoming from Dancing Girl Press. Recent work can be seen at Lime Hawk, concis, Sweet Tree Review, Kestrel, The Chiron Review, decomp, and Inter/rupture. Visit: jennifermacbainstephens.



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