Issue 126 |
Spring 2015


Sometimes it’s tucked into itself,
sewn up like the lips of a prisoner.

After the procedure, the girls learn
how to walk again, mermaids with new legs,
soft knees buckling under their new sinless bodies.
Daughter is synonymous with traitor, the father says.
If your mother survived it, you can. Cut, cut, cut.

One girl exposes another girls’ secret, they are on a reality TV show.
They huddle around her asking questions, touching her arm in white liberal
concern for her pleasure. Can you even feel anything down there?
The camera zooms into a Georgia O’Keefe painting.

But mother did you even truly survive it?
The carving, the warm blade against
the inner thigh. Scalping.
Deforestation. Leveling the ground. Silencing
the devil’s tongue between your legs, maybe
you did?

Two girls lie in bed beside one another holding mirrors
under the mouths of their skirts, comparing wounds.