Dearth

Audrey T. Carroll is a Queens, NYC native whose obsessions include kittens, coffee, Supernatural, Buffy, and the Rooster Teeth community. Her work has been published or is forthcoming in Fiction International, So to Speak, Feminine Inquiry, the A3 Review, and others. Her poetry collection, Queen of Pentacles, is forthcoming from Choose the Sword Press. She […]

Matriarchal

We wake again pleading for the last time, a forked tongue once lost between planetary failures. Their rotation had become dangerous like birthing hips on the move, either circled in naked light, or coiling an orbit around the throat of some dark diviner’s rabbit. Anti-gravity had taken its unsteered toll, the air having long been […]

To Hildegard

The tenth child, your parents gave you to the church as tithe; I don’t know if I would do the same had I ten, twenty, a hundred to my name. In our church, the young families have begun to foster local children, taken from mothers who are high, forgetful, taken from days spent strapped in […]

Aturdido

There is a black and white photo of El Capitolio on the wall of Abuelo’s house. Its icy frame catches the golden dust in the kitchen air, appearing Pardo. There is no such term in English. He tells me of the colors like a dream. Suddenly, I am ten again, learning Spanish and shame, drowning. […]

My Mother’s Mouth, A Gift Horse

Father glowers into her mouth— a drain, clogged with leftovers, a dirty sun. Lays his fork down, swallows mashed potatoes like they’re whole. Her mouth, which never stays closed, happily churns herring morsels and syllables into viscous mounds that morph whole sentences into crowds, spilling in and out of a rush hour train until nobody’s […]

Archaeology of Silence

Can we assume the bald man dresses himself in a skin-colored turtleneck to intentionally resemble a phallus or must he announce he’s studied Freud? When she suggests I think outside the box I respond that saying think outside the box is an example of thinking inside the box. She looks at me like I’m French-Canadian, […]

Content is a glimpse

Content is a glimpse +++++Willem de Kooning +++++We look at the world once, in childhood. +++++The rest is memory. ++++++++++Louise Glück 1. Cóntent is a Glimpse Trapped in the dream of wisdom birthed out of the deep desire for a magisterial eye’s +++++deific “I am” fantasy of a scalpel-sharp panoptical glimpse, itself at war with […]

Mercury Diner

She sits over coffee until it goes cold and I dump it and pour new. I get her to take a bowl of soup sometimes, which may be all she eats. She doesn’t look bad, considering. She can’t hear much. Sometimes she writes to a daughter out West, but mostly she’s deep in a book […]

Cassandra

Brother, your body is a spit-pig, a split trunk of light-struck oak. They will quarter your meat, deny you Styx. In coinless eyes I’ve seen the thugs who come to stuff themselves in our scared spaces, the waves of snails that stick horrible to our shores. My tongue tied with limestone, I cannot stop it. […]

The Sound

He follows you into the woods as always, staying within reach of a stray touch: out of habit, yes, and because there’s no reason to believe this day will end any differently than others. Were he to know the spade’s grim purpose—blade laced with rust, old earth— he might plea for the earned mercy of […]

Selenographer

i. your desire for the moon holds the weight of a steam-powered whaling ship. it is why we braid wreaths for the cows, why the light after dusk behaves like startled deer. when the moon’s lamb-face appears through the forest’s mane, your skin begins to bloom, mantling me in its petals. a memory lets go […]

Listen:

This is the sound of drunkenness held +++++on the last twilit gunshot. The sound ++++++++++of your voice carrying from the flat lawn +++++and up past the sleeping baby, past ++++++++++the boys whose ears have tuned ++++++++++to this semblance of fury. +++++Tonight, Texas folds itself down +++++into the hollow of your throat and nestles there ++++++++++++++++its […]

Where the Heart Is

I’m driving through your neighborhood. It’s quiet and lonely, like a summer lake without a boat. In the air, white silk light, slow as milk. I can see through the houses. They’re more than themselves, like a minuend before the subtraction of the subtrahend. My thought music points me north. I’ve forgotten one of my […]

Daughter I Bleed

Placeholder: Waiting for the Biopsy Results

The naked woman in the video I study—double mastectomy—tosses me into possibility, presses the soft muscle of what remains of self against self, sternum and rib shucked clean by surgical steel.  She stands sculpted, a torso hewn to scarred catastrophe— emptied parentheses.  The Mayans called it zero, this mussel shell emptied of its muscle set […]

How the word poem shows up in my audio text messages

I say poem, the phone hears problem. Maze, no escape. Driving with my mother in a manic state. The sharpness of her no. Telling it like it is. She says “Crazy!” trying to explain. Unanswerable strangeness of the human brain. Equations, undoable. How to keep sane the status she wants to return to. I say […]

Karma*

We squat unbroken, faces toward the earth, feet on the shoulders of the one below us, fingers covering their eyes as we cup their heads between our palms, as if reading their minds, feeling the weight of others on our backs, their warm hands blocking our sight, generations of shiny bodies stacked like vertebrae pierce […]

On Missing

I could play the guitar just barely and I would try when we’d arrive home all liquor dilated, hearts more capable of loving. As far as I can tell, there’s nothing that lights me up like this once did. The magic in my life is quieter now, but grace, once parsimonious, now crackles through my […]

A Stop Sign Worn as a Helmet

I He cared for her whimsy and for the way her shyness played out. At some gotcha point, in the negative spaces of photos spotted at some exhibition downtown, he started to imagine her silhouette, her T-shirt a burst of yellow competing with Cape Cod pelicans and stealthily-erected Jotunheimen high-rises. She confided in him like […]