1—Is this the sin our grandmothers spoke of? Organs splayed like butterflies shot down mid-flight. 
2—Bedtime stories were set upon beanstalks, their weight pushing clouds apart without consent. 
3—We yearn to embody women with immovable thighs, but do we speak of them like sisters?
Their hardened tongues, our own. 
4—Hands heavy with wet, a mother peels her cub from bathwater the color of dimes. Watch her
rest the pup in her hip’s bowl—wide enough for another, for a whole army of men. 
5—A stranger’s fingers travel the throbbing cusp of home. 
6—Call the [ ] God for she’s the only one worthy. Claw at the screen separating your body from
hers. Scream for safety, for salvation, for rights. 


Kristen Rouisse holds an MFA from the University of South Florida in poetry. Her work has appeared in RHINO Poetry, Glass Poetry Press, Hobart, Yes Poetry, and Superstition Review, among others. She teaches writing online at USF and is currently working on her first book.

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