Mark Mitchell
Foreign Hand

Mark Mitchell - Foreign Hand

Poetry
Mark J. Mitchell studied writing at UC Santa Cruz under Raymond Carver, George Hitchcock, and Barbara Hull. His work has… Read more »
Jane O. Wayne
If Mourning

Jane O. Wayne - If Mourning

Poetry
Jane O. Wayne is the author of four books of poetry, the latest of which is The Other Place You… Read more »
Mitchell Untch
It’s Summer This Dream

Mitchell Untch - It’s Summer This Dream

Poetry
Mitchell Untch has been published in The Los Angeles Review, New Millennium Writers Contest, The Monadnock Anthology, Nimrod Intl., The… Read more »
J.R. Tappenden
R is for Rhoda Consumed by a Fire

J.R. Tappenden - R is for Rhoda Consumed by a Fire

Poetry
J.R. Tappenden is the founding editor of Architrave Press. She earned an MFA in poetry from the University of Missouri… Read more »
Colleen Abel
Remake: The Kiss

Colleen Abel - Remake: The Kiss

Poetry
Colleen Abel is the author of Housewifery, a chapbook (dancing girl press, 2013). A former Diane Middlebrook Poetry Fellow, her… Read more »
Jennifer Givhan
Ritual With Fish Water

Jennifer Givhan - Ritual With Fish Water

Poetry
Jennifer Givhan was a PEN/Rosenthal Emerging Voices Fellow and a 2015 National Endowment for the Arts poetry fellowship recipient, as… Read more »
Stephanie Lenox
The Take This Job and Shove It Ode

Stephanie Lenox - The Take This Job and Shove It Ode

Poetry
Stephanie Lenox is the author of the poetry collection Congress of Strange People (Airlie Press) and the poetry chapbook The… Read more »

Ritual With Fish Water

Jennifer Givhan

When the doorbell rang this time, she knew
it would be different. The driftwood
of his shoulders knocked his rigid chest

like hooves. Her floating man. “This
rotten world,” he said almost before she could
react, “it’s half-gutted, isn’t it?” Did

she nod? She opened the door wider, allowed
him in—dragging his fish, his strings of light,
his wounds—from the rain. She didn’t feel hope,

exactly, nor dread. “A drink?” she asked.
“Scotch,” he said, folding
to unfold as an origami lantern on her couch,

muddying her pillowslips. She said nothing.
She’d gone on living without
his good nights beating against her

like a broken radio signal. “I’ve missed you—”
She watched him hold his glass restlessly,
a bit of brine pooling at his pant legs, his loafers.

“There’s albondigas on the stove.” Out of habit,
“Will you stay? Can you eat?” He set down
his empty glass, picked up some walnut husks
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