by Leigh Chadwick
Today is a Monday full of typos. I keep waking up in a sea of lions. A head swarming with bees. A mouthful of bears. I’ve never tried laughing underwater and I never will. This is the third poem where the ghost of my grandmother tells me to chew with my mouth closed. I tell my therapist, Taylor Swift is still in love and that’s all the hope I need for now. It’s been so long since I’ve said hello to the woods, I don’t even know if they’re still making trees. For foreplay, I watch my husband swallow all of the bullets in the world. He unloads the dishwasher while I press my ear against the refrigerator and listen to it quietly hum. When I close my eyes, I still see the blood from the kids on the other kids’ shoes. Imagine if bullets made people bleed in Comic Sans. I like the song that goes, Who gives a fuck about the Oxford American? I buy a round of bullets but forget to buy the gun that goes with them. I ask Siri, What happens if you put a bullet in the microwave? Siri says, The same thing that happens when the feathers in your pillow fly away. On TV, CNN is reporting that the CDC says we should ban assault rifles, and that, even if you’re fully vaccinated, if you fall off a cliff, you’re still probably going to die.
Leigh Chadwick is the author of the chapbook, Daughters of the State (Bottlecap Press, 2021), and the poetry coloring book, This Is How We Learn How to Pray (ELJ Editions, 2021). Wound Channels, her full-length poetry collection, and Pretend I Am Real, a novel written in vignettes, will be simultaneously released by ELJ Editions in February of 2022. Her writing has appeared or is forthcoming in Salamander, Heavy Feather Review, Indianapolis Review, and Milk Candy Review, among others. Find her on Twitter at @LeighChadwick5.