My gaze clung to phantoms:
the mother and son whose worn boots
and thin hats could not hide
the numb mask typical of cemetery patrons
in mid-January. A chipped stone
below winter’s blanket stared back at them,
hardly the father, husband, and fallen soldier
they remembered. His boy waved
hello, unaware of a mom’s watering eyes
as she twisted a ring on her finger.
Her child started working
on three slushy mounds, hurrying
them into a snowman no taller than he,
its shoulders sinking much like
the mother’s, leaning left as it offered
a half-hug to unfeeling granite,
stick arms scuffing rock ––
the sound shook me, urged birds
from the surrounding trees,
eavesdropping made easy when grief
is so blinding. I saw mom and boy share
a shiver of dead words with air.
Breezes guided the sagging body of ice
closer to a grave marker premature in its placing.
I imagine the frozen figure, tilted, collapsing,
might resemble the ground’s tenant
on the battlefield, far from home
when he passed; I imagine that the drips of frost,
melting into rivers across a sergeant’s title,
might mirror those tears shed in the name
of national sacrifice: I imagine
his ghost might love this companion.
Dani Dymond is a twenty-three-year-old college student majoring in English/Creative Writing and minoring in sleep deprivation. Her poetry has appeared in journals such as Young Ravens Literary Review and Outrageous Fortune, online publications like BuckOff Magazine and The Bitchin’ Kitsch, and several university magazines. She is a feminist, vegetarian, activist, and obsessive dog mom. While she wishes poets were paid in licorice and Netflix subscriptions, her goal to finish an MFA at CSULB and someday teach writing at the college level while publishing her own work will wonderfully suffice.
Tulips lift toward the sun
not as lips parting,
but cycloptic eyes, self-blinding
to defy dozens of faces
that peer directly inside,
The news networks blink in code,
send out psychic flare guns.
“Help. I’m an illusion.”
I accidently knocked over
the Singer sewing machine,
an old black metal one I found
in a junk store.
The waves are shaped by sirens
and the sea walls built to echo
Bamboo and rain drum the time I was a child and my mother was mapping the neighborhood dynasty with her sister Corrine. For years they plotted to overthrow the geriatric mindset of their mother who kneaded Judaism into me and my sister’s Play-Doh.
Her chameleon eye in the moon
like a crater, and hair falling in meteors
over bare shoulders.
Forgetting how to swim
was like losing language,
a silencing of the limbs
that once knew fluid
like the vein of a wrist,
the curve of an eyelash
Madness is not the only art that consumes.
In our mind, rooms, and in them the scuff
of footsteps and faces veiled in tulle.
Once I was immortal,
condemned to endless mornings,
empty of the knowledge
of manmade rituals.
my parents have a joint facebook account bc my mom found out my dad was messaging someone name TexasTitties2006 in an online poker game and she lost. her. goddamn. mind and threw the tv down the stairs.