Tuesday, February 8, 2022



Outside after a bad dream —no stars,
no canopy of leaves— just streets

and down those streets, like large
flat rocks in the middle of a stream, my neighbors’ houses.

But sometimes, walking around, straight ahead
on sidewalks, I correspond with arguments

swimming at the heart of houses, and move parallel

to their interiors: old clothes, crates,
canned peaches —everything

sinking to the bottom of the bottom of houses.

Rain, starting slowly, thuds

the metal bottom of a boat— a sound you know in the middle
of the night in houses. And there’s a current pulling

at the boat, the movement of debt— we do not

own these houses.

Often I am brushed on the leg —right in the kitchen!—
by a fish, yet my sisters trust the integrity of houses.

Lately I’m happy to be having the sex I am having
most often now, inside of houses.

Those tiny, inquisitive sea horses, flickering
here and there— how they addressed us we will remember in houses.

Later, like an allowance, the moon comes round: fat, white

Later the moon floods
the alleys, empties the rooms of our houses.

How I know I am not happens most often in houses:
creaking the floorboards, slowly breathing in houses.



Kate Northrop is a recipient of the Jeannette Haien Ballard Writers Award and fellowships at the MacDowell Colony and Yaddo. Her recent poetry collections are Clean (Persea Books) and cuntstruck (C and R Press). Northrop is a contributing editor at The American Poetry Review and teaches in the Creative Writing Program at the University of Wyoming. She lives in Laramie, WY.



We loved reading the work that we’ve published (clearly), and we want an opportunity to better hear our contributors. We're featuring audio recordings of poems from our pages, read by the poet. This an open invitation to all contributors from any of our issues, we were delighted to print your work, now we’re eager to hear it.

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