The Boiler

Jennifer Hanks

gar child tells it in first-person

I went looking for my life
in the woods like a bloodhound
you don’t know what it is to have a story
wrapped around you     so tight
not a collar, not a chain
shimmering in the morning
but a ribbon cutting into
your waist  mine’s on my wrist
right where the veins meet
like a ghost’s anesthetic fingers
around me in the night

you’re a doll sopping in the river
but the story’s a bracelet
you can’t slip off your wrist
like a bloodhound
you smell your own life  green like a field
that’s bleaching every day

TRANSFORMATION SEQUENCE WITH BREAD BASKET AND CHERRY SPIT
(click to read)

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Jennifer Hanks is the author of two forthcoming chapbooks, Prophet Fever (Hyacinth Girl Press) and The Unsteady Planet (Instar Books), a collaboration with illustrator Julie Herndon. Her work has appeared in Arcadia, Ghost Ocean, Menacing Hedge, Muzzle, [PANK], and Word Riot, among other journals. She is an assistant editor for Sundress Publications and an MFA candidate at the University of New Orleans. She is slowly amassing a sleeve of freshwater fish on her right arm (so far: two zebrafish and a discus) and tweets at @corsetofscales.