The Wardrobe’s Best Dressed: Claudia Cortese’s “Blood Medals”

Cortese Pic

Lucy sticks a stick

in an anthill, carries it to the other side of the yard. Ant sisters scurry to find their wiry brothers, their mothers with bellies like fat black beads. Lucy scrapes the sandbox, writes tangerine and starblade and dead girls glow prettiest. She cuts a caterpillar. Throws one green half in the grass. Puts the other in her mouth.

This selection comes from Claudia Cortese’s chapbook Blood Medals, available from Thrush Poetry Press. Purchase your copy here!

Claudia Cortese has two chapbooks: Blood Medals (Thrush Poetry Press, 2015) and The Red Essay and Other Histories (forthcoming from Horse Less Press, 2015). Her poems and lyric essays have found homes at Black Warrior Review, Blackbird, Crazyhorse, Kenyon Review Online, and Sixth Finch, among others. Cortese lives in New Jersey and is the poetry editor for Swarm (

A recipient of a 2015 NEA Fellowship for poetry, grants from the Barbara Deming Memorial Fund and the Kentucky Foundation for Women, Staci R. Schoenfeld’s poems appear in or are forthcoming from Washington Square, Mid-American Review, North Dakota Quarterly, Muzzle, and Southern Humanities Review, among others. She is a PhD student at the University of South Dakota.


Leave a Reply