For my mother

By Arden Yum

After Toni Morrison’s Beloved


Mother, tell me about the child in your womb.

                                               We shared water &

                                                                             blood &

mother's guilt

By Stephanie K

I ate the placenta and the umbilical cord

(and i ate and i ate).

I tasted the iron on my teeth

(it stained until i swallowed and i swallowed the hydrogen peroxide).

Artificial Dreams

By Isabelle Shachtman

Been sitting still the whole day

Can’t sleep


Thank you trazowhatervthehellyouare

For the frog and the eyes

And the image of my

Ex-girlfriend in the sun and


What am I saying?

What’ve I done?


A Bicycle Accident

By Cheyenne Mann

Graze the lips with concrete and floss with blood

Wintergreen and sharp, pennies in the mouth that

Rattle like bicycle wheels down long hills.

Bandaid sticky, adhesive concealer that fortifies a face

To face the world dripping with bruises, salt, and the momentum


By Gaby Kill

My brother’s just moved into college!

Well, not entirely- there’s still his coffee machine and a box of granola bars, but we’re driving those to him today.

It was just red

By Gaby Kill

"Nothing ever ends poetically. It ends and we turn it into poetry. All that blood was never one beautiful, it was just red." - Kait Rokowski


I wanna make poetry out of the way the boy who was my first grade best friend

private poem

By Yasi Farahmandnia

there are years to work out the kinks.

my hands buzzing and my tongue stuck to the back of rusty teeth, i scream to write in an unmarked


but spit wets the page instead.


i want to communicate by destroying our common language.

neighbor’s shopkeeper bell

By Yasi Farahmandnia

you are

one of the more lovelier sounds.

i find these days,

i can replicate you if i close my ears enough:

the clash of my spoon with the ice cream bowl,

the kiss my lighter leaves on the body of a candle,


By Sophie Esther Ramsey

The day I fell out of love with my body—
my capsule,
my shrine—
weakness gnawed away at the palms of my hands,
dissatisfaction consumed my waist,
and comfort withered away like the skin I picked at
and night.


By Gaby Kill

My lover is strong for a reason.

I was teasing her neck and giggled when she flipped me

  “play fighting”

hit flat on my back, seeing stars in broad daylight on the lawn

of the private school she would get kicked out of.


The Sculptor

By Mariam Khelashvili

The sculptor unveiled a block

A block of marble bought with the

Cents, dollars, kept under lock

Kept under a lock and key.


The sculptor went home again

while rain and lightning poured from skies

Stepped upon the midnight train,

Of Questions and Answers

By Ayesha Asad

I have wondered why my body
looks the way it does in the sun.
Brow bone glittering, sweat
tricking like the last swill of water
down a glass, blood circulating
like clockwork, a gear so visceral
and rooted in its own

Alone in a Cabin I Think of What Led Me Here

By Ayesha Asad

Was it the way the leaves fell,
streamlined, as I burst
bawling onto greenery,

or the first time sunlight peeked
through dark branches overhead—

or the reddish-purple skin
stretched over my sleeping body,
surrounded by fluid? What phantom

Let the Rain Keep Falling

By Ayesha Asad

Let the Rain Keep Falling

O birthplace rain     I take what I can from

your mouth,    delivering myself

             from spring seeds,

wetting my tongue

                            with your resilience.

And you warm my skin           in segments,


By Billie Croft



It’s half past eleven, so

we find an epileptic street light & swap sweat


before I put my hands in your pockets &

tell you I feel like I’m in Riyadh with a roughcast of redsand on my tongue and camel skin beneath my feet


1980s Coke Party

By Billie Croft

The deciding factor in

whether or not I’d breach the boundary between binaries

was a gender neutral bathroom sign.


I heard someone belt a show tune in the shower while

another howled. Someone else took off their jeans, stuffed


By Billie Croft

I will liken the heavy clouds that pass over my land to grey matter

              before my body remembers the practicality of pain

              & blood rushes into my bladder.


              I’ll swallow a scream, or


By Samantha Liu

Today I pulled
my grandmother’s body
from the mouth of the river,
unpeeled milkflowers and seawater
from her hair, and knelt over her
the way we bend over our own reflections:
to drink.
Nainai, ni ren shi wo me?*


By Gaby Kill

True silence isn't sealed lips
it's unread texts, deleted history
it's a phone that someone never picks up
The line the dead girl's parents still pay for
even though there is no one to answer it.
the principal is adamant on thoughts

Off to Prom We Go

By Peggy Yin

I tried on a mermaid dress the other day, and waddled two steps before stripping it off;
I saw how it snagged on my hips and clutched at my chest,

the same way I gripped the towels we tripped in so many years ago—
our hair, stringy and streaming from the community pool


By Julie Pham

first; to detect a charlatan, check pulse.
             is it too fast? then it’s a fake.
                          body too fat? a fake.
                                         check body temperature. is the skin a frigid north pole, breakable like a stick?

The Beard

By Rachel Stander

You walked into class two minutes late.
I noticed immediately; you were freshly shaved.
From the top of your sideburns all the way down. You had a baby face.
You looked the same as the day we met, back in the sixth grade, when we were full of optimism.

31 lines for 31 days of knowing you

By Olivia Humphrey

i have never loved another in the way i have found myself to love you.
i have loved you the way the sun loves the dandelions
and the way the tides love the moon.
i simply cannot imagine a world where we didn’t save one another.

Life as a Forgotten Piece

By Savanna Bright

The cold gross floors
Stomp, stomp, stomp
Black tiny spaces
In shoes that stink
Im confined for hours upon hours
The rigid concrete tears holes in me
get lost in the bed sheets
The last thing to be grabbed from the bathroom floor


By Emma Anderson

The first time someone called me fat was in the 1st grade.
I have always been chubby, and I knew it.
Moreover, people around me never let me forget it.
The hollow shadow of my figure beckoned my insecurities.

I'm Balding

By Kechi Mbah

My reflection swallows round my eyes like twisted hair beads and pink oil
while the mirror leaks a frightening truth
that I go mad to.
I hold the wishing in my fingers
drenched in castor, tea tree, and peppermint
my scalp only blooms red


By Elena Unger

What is a body but a cardboard box
smoothed over with wrapping paper?
A shiny exterior that beckons eager eyes,
and a sheen spiral of store-bought ribbon.

Venus's Apprentice

By Sarah Walker

she rocks on a satin sea
her crossbow jawline aimed upward
trained on the sun.

she shoots, trying to make
the sun sink to her,
make it fall
in love with her.

these ink-stained hands

By Kristy Kwok

there’s a galaxy, all ink and stars, that spins below your collarbone, 
and i can’t help but wonder who drew it:
did they see you as i see you? did they mean it to remind me
of the truth that other hands have gone where mine just dream they’ve been?