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Jessica Morey-Collins


is the prospect of a sister. Two Samantha Mulders hold hands at the curb. Static flicks
off of their finger-nails, a bee-drone fuzzes the frame. They are many,

and the sadness has such a bad smell that it peels paint & the paint curls into two
new Samantha Mulders, gluey at their peeled away places.

Take today, for example. A little sister lays down, clips
                    her spine

into the sidewalk. All the other sisters hopscotch across her, which is their form of
wallowing, and turns the sidewalk Samantha into a smudge of ash, into a habit

-able planet. A sister is a glitch in objectivity. The static gathering under the tap of
each foot is time fighting with itself. The sidewalk under each footfall, once a sister,
is now

the sort of static that blooms into rude flowers that shout HAVE YOU THE &
CAN YOU SPARE A, and the static flowers suck oxygen,

spew carbon. Nation-wise, bee-wings flutter off of bee bodies. Sisters split into ever
more sisters. We haven’t any time, but the sisters—ever giving—flick their spare all
over—their moments opal, their bodies are lost in starlight,

and the photons that hold

our eyes are immeasurably old—dead by the time they reach us.

after Laura Kasischke

Work weakened, the interns grapple with a lone time construct. The loom of their luck-blown die, cast; the heinous corner creak of one number toward the up-face, another toward the table. Numbers or Names. Never the obvious informants, of. When
they approach experience, it dissolves. Cotton candy in a never-twice river. They
mourn into their raccoon hands.

Even their sensations have been named for them. They are spasms wrapped in
newspaper. They are cracked knuckles organized in an ice-cube tray. Before, the clack
and scrape of flints. After, the glint and its nasty shadow, cast. At last, the wall-cave
dance of half-price beers.

During the flourish of a signature, they were given the glint of coin. But late
capitalism’s fit of future ripped coin from glint, so glint alone now tickles them.

The glint’s demands not bland nor fabulous. The glint wants no limb-thrashing, just a clap’s echo, a flash of shadow over closed eyelids. That S twice stung through is

their eyes closed, hands open, pay us, pay us. And from their flayed hands just spun


On the drive out we are also islands.
Our big wet hearts are everywhere
and our intentions only little blips of land
sticking up in the middle. What but clumps of sand
are we. Stilted houses stand for
nothing, stand forth while the gulf heaves and glistens—
granules, habitats half-sunk, half-sinking. We slow our pulses
just enough to listen to fish scales pop off
of beached monsters—maws all howl-shaped, yellow
water sucking the sand out from under each
husk. Our big wet hearts muddy up each
other—our countries rubbing together at their edges
but each of us wearing her own America—fair
only in the sense of poetic justice; that is, our laughs
are collateral. Halve them. We’d landed
as a dirge for lost species, but treating each other, still.


Jessica Morey-Collins
is a Pushcart nominated poet and educator. She received her MFA from the University of New Orleans, where she won an Academy of American Poets award, and worked as associate poetry editor for Bayou Magazine. Her poems and essays can be found in PleiadesThe PinchJukedAnimal Literary Journal and elsewhere. She is currently working on a Masters of Community and Regional Planning at the University of Oregon.