I stand in the closet choosing
which of my father’s belts
my mother will beat me with.

Bridle, latigo,
braided or smooth.
His tastes contain
so many fashions.

Night cow hanging
on top of the hill
breaking grass—

when they come for you
do not give your skin.
Countless children depend
on your escape over the moon.


Lauren Davis is a poet living on the Olympic Peninsula in a Victorian seaport community. She holds an MFA from the Bennington Writing Seminars, and her work can be found in publications such as Prairie Schooner, Spillway, and Split Lip Press. She works as an editor at The Tishman Review.