Stevie Edwards


Stevie Edwards is a poet, editor, and educator. She is Editor-in-Chief at Muzzle Magazine and Acquisitions Editor at YesYes Books. Her first book, Good Grief (Write Bloody, 2012), received two post-publication awards, the Independent Publisher Book Awards Bronze in Poetry and the Devil’s Kitchen Reading Award from Southern Illinois University - Carbondale. Her second book, Humanly, was recently released by Small Doggies Press. Her poems have appeared in Verse Daily, The Offing, PANK, Vinyl, Devil’s Lake, The Journal, Indiana Review, Salt Hill, and elsewhere. She holds an MFA from Cornell University and a BA from Albion College. She currently lives in Charleston, SC, where she works for a nonfiction publisher by day and is a poet by night.

But Nothing’s Fair after Love

Because I was a bad finger to tie his ribbon to.
Because I was a bad sky
to look up at—
not ugly, but bad. Because I threw myself
into myself. Because I threw
the sky into a suitcase
I left in New York. Because I never learned
to drive myself. Because I needed
a guide out of the woods. Because I lost
my way, sat down in the middle of brambles
so high above my head but didn’t say
come, didn’t say come get me, not once.
Because he said take care of yourself
on the voicemail I deleted.
Because I thought that was taking care
of myself. Because I was cruel with honey,
lured in the ants to squash. I can’t
resent them for coming.
I can’t even step out of my bedroom without
ruining my shoes: I am the wrecking ball
and the closed factory. I am what swings.

I think this is a poem about why it’s a bad idea to fall in love with me, or perhaps the feeling of remorse after having been reckless with someone else's heart. I chose the “Because” anaphora, partially because in some ways the poem serves as a list of excuses for shitty behavior. I also was rereading Bringing the Shovel Down by Ross Gay (which includes a couple of fantastic poems with “Because” anaphora). I always think I should quote Derrida or Butler or something in artist statement, but really—it's a breakup poem, which many of us wind up needing eventually.