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POETRY
tenderling
Emily Corwin
Writer of the Month

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1

in a bad goodnight, in a good stove blackening,
I am a girl of pony hair—a bagful of ribbon. when
I dress the wounds, when I dress myself with figs
and coffee berries, I get so very emotional about
you. I care so very much, I just want to know you
are good and alive—here at day break, broken.

2

the day breaks, it is broken like cups. you are alive
and good, I awaken as if hit over the head with a soft,
gentle hammer. I hurry along the country, bringing
rhubarb and a branch, dark and oaken in my mouth—
an offering, something to place against your ugly door
—my love, my once darling. for you, I am catching
cold, catching hold of this glittering.

3

I catch coldness here, I hold the glitter. can we agree
to forget this? forget last night with my cocktail, my
caring so much for so little in my hand? today, I awaken
with burn, a light-rush, a stove going black. you say
where I am is a place you could never love, could never
be alive in. too much cornsilk, too much gaping like
a skinned deer baby—too much, I am too much.

4

too much, I am a baby deer for skinning—girl hurting in the
corn, pony hair and ribbons. forget the rhubarb, the branch dark
and oaken. forget my emotion—caring too much for your ugly
door. I dress in figs, the stove blackens to coals, and love that
you are, once darling, in the worst goodbye, I am a girl—
alive, at day breaking open.

 

originally appeared in Gigantic Sequins


Emily Corwin is an MFA candidate in poetry at Indiana University-Bloomington and the former Poetry Editor for Indiana Review. Her writing has appeared or is forthcoming in Black Warrior Review, Gigantic Sequins, New South, Yemassee, THRUSH, and elsewhere. She has two chapbooks, My Tall Handsome (Brain Mill Press) and darkling (Platypus Press) which were published in 2016. Her first full-length collection, tenderling is forthcoming in 2018 from Stalking Horse Press. You can follow her online at @exitlessblue.