Leslie Ann Minot



Shifting her weight from hip to hip
shakes the stone wall; it cracks and fissures.

Bark itches, falls away like an old scab.
She is vulnerable again. Nobody said

it would be easy. Her first steps
fracture the foundation of the house.

None of the stories tell a tree how
to turn back into a woman. Her arms

ache with reaching. Not because
it is impossible. Her fingers uncurl.




A Separation, by Katie Kitamura

There is a sentence
that is the exact weight
of a dragonfly’s wing,
in a world where such things are weighed.

There is a reason we speak
of “etching”
in the same sentence
as “pain”
that is as much
about the nature of fine
lines as about
sharp blades.

This map distrusts
its territory.

Medical diagrams
of the heart
are accurate
in their way.

It doesn’t matter that I
prefer the muscular
bewilderment of red,
pulsing its way through
the green &
difficult world.

Hag-Seed, by Margaret Atwood

I put the play on like a pair of jeans,
old & comfortable.
They tell me about
my body’s metamorphoses,
& the way time
wears & fades.
Love is the contrasting
thread, but wisdom
the flat felled seam.

Empty Set, by Verónica Gerber Bicceci, translated by Christina MacSweeney

Tree rings translated
into a board can tell
so much more
about time
than a clock
unless you
are trying to
intersect with someone
at just the
right moment.

Gather enough evidence
& soon perhaps none
of it will make
what you were thinking of
as sense.

Point a telescope
at anything
except the stars.

An empty circle
is what the violent
of absence recognizes
in the mirror.