The Wardrobe’s Best Dressed: Personal Science by Lillian-Yvonne Bertram

Homo narrans (sustenance)¹




¹No one is sure why but the cities fall in on themselves. Some whisper quake, but this is not a grinding or a shudder, just a fall. Buildings kill everyone inside. There is no rescue effort. After a time the streets are quiet and the rest of us become very lonely. No one knows how to begin looking for the people we knew existed. Where is my friend, the social worker? To get anywhere we walk or swim. After a time, we can stitch our own rucksacks and rope together dogs to pull sleds when the snow begins. It still snows. For sustenance we drink the leftover wax from votives, melted and stirred with a twist of honey. In the beginning we are amazed at how well our insides accept this.

This selection comes from the collection Personal Science, available from Tupelo Press. Order your copy here. Our curator for November is M. Mack.

In addition to Personal Science (Tupelo Press), Lillian-Yvonne Bertram  is the author of a slice from the cake made of air (Red Hen Press), the chapbook cutthroat glamours (Phantom Books), But a Storm is Blowing from Paradise (Red Hen Press), chosen by Claudia Rankine as winner of the 2010 Benjamin Saltman Award, and Grand Dessein, an artist book available from Container. Lillian-Yvonne teaches in the MFA program at UMASS Boston.

M. Mack is a genderqueer poet, editor, and fiber artist in Virginia. Ze is the author of Theater of Parts (Sundress Publications, 2016) and three chapbooks, most recently MINE (Big Lucks Books, forthcoming 2017). Their work has appeared in such places as cream city review, Cloud Rodeo, Rogue Agent, Menacing Hedge, and The Queer South (Sibling Rivalry Press, 2014). Mack is a founding co-editor of Gazing Grain Press, an assistant editor for Cider Press Review, and the monster maker behind What Is Reality Plushies. Find them at

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