by Maggie Queeney

  1. At thirteen, our thin bodies bent,
  2. flattening skirts and dresses over the floor.
  3. Our teeth held pins between tinted lips,
  4. forcing us to indicate what we wanted to say
  5. with our arms as if leading a prayer
  6. over the sequins and suede, the embroidered
  7. flowers and birds we had dissected
  8. back into flat approximations, part
  9. by part, of our size and shape.
  1. We centered the bloom of paper patterns
  2. unfolded and creased, road maps
  3. to the ghosts of trees, to shadow bodies
  4. listing and whispering against the floorboards
  5. in the house drafts, the indifferent air
  6. that moved when we moved.
  1. We held our scissors pointed away,
  2. as if their slender blades could pull
  3. a truth north out of the room
  4. where we bent,
  5. mouths streaming thread.
Packingtown Review – Vol.7, Winter 2015/2016

Maggie Queeney's work has appeared in The Southern Poetry Review, The Southeast Review, and Handsome, among others. She lives with her cats Skeletor and Battlecat in a pink house in Chicago, where she serves as the Library Assistant at the Poetry Foundation.

  1. Dusa Isijanov
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