The Wardrobe’s Best Dressed: Jeannine Hall Gailey’s “Unexplained Fevers”


I Like the Quiet: Snow White

The minutes’ silence wraps around me like a stole
and underneath this glass, I contemplate the perfect
vanilla ice, the shapes of faces on ceilings,
mares’ tails in the sky. My eggshell-thin
eyelids take it all in, you might see them flutter,
think I’m faking. But really, if you could get me out
of your looking glass, you could see
the real me; the hermit-crab, the snail inside its opaque shell.
Not a party princess, not ready to embrace
the noisy handsome prince just yet; give me a little
time to myself. I just might dream up a new ending,
a new soul. A sister wise as I am beautiful.
I would give her a sword and riding boots,
talking birds and a sorceress voice. She might even
talk me down from this glass ledge,
this solitude of sleep, might shake me til the apple
drops from my mouth and I finally find my tongue.


This selection comes from Jeannine Hall Gailey’s Unexplained Fevers, available from New Binary Press. Purchase your copy here!

Jeannine Hall Gailey is the Poet Laureate of Redmond, Washington, and the author of Becoming the Villainess (Steel Toe Books, 2006) and She Returns to the Floating World (Kitsune Books, 2011) which was an Eric Hoffer Montaigne Medal finalist in 2012. Her work has been featured on NPR’s The Writer’s Almanac, Verse Daily, and in The Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror. Her poems have appeared in journals such as The Iowa Review, American Poetry Review and Prairie Schooner. She volunteers as an editorial consultant for Crab Creek Review and currently teaches part-time at the MFA program at National University. Her personal website is

Darren C. Demaree is the author of three poetry collections, As We Refer to Our Bodies (2013, 8th House), Temporary Champions (2014, Main Street Rag), and Not For Art For Prayer (2015, 8th House). He is the recipient of three Pushcart Prize nominations and a Best of the Net nomination. He is also a founding editor of Ovenbird Poetry and AltOhio. He is currently living in Columbus, Ohio with his wife and children.


2 thoughts on “The Wardrobe’s Best Dressed: Jeannine Hall Gailey’s “Unexplained Fevers”

  1. Wonderful piece with its alternate ego for Snow White – a retelling with a wise twist!

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