The Wardrobe’s Best Dressed: Our Debatable Bodies by Marisa Crane


YAPPING DOGS

yapping dogs i understand you sometimes i want
to fucking scream for no perceivable reason
& sometimes people tell me to get over it
to choose my battles haven’t you ever knocked
over a bottle of nice scotch & wondered what
the drunk ants talk about when they aren’t working
themselves into a dizzying haze? no anxiety
is too small it’s common to have to convince
flowers to bloom i know this because as a child
i sat on my grandfather’s lap & asked if giving
up was the same as dying & his response was
a fully-loaded sigh the gunpowder white & suspicious
could have been from a powdered doughnut but i know
the difference between passivity & gluttony five years later
i had a crush on a girl named kristin i asked her
the same question i asked my grandfather &
she said fruit grows faster if you feed it the truth
so i sat under an orange tree & shot off
confessions like catholic bullets i dreamt kristin & i were
slow dancing on clouds now i can no longer look
at her when she speaks i know the meaning of unrest
how it slithers up your spine like a snake & licks
the base of your skull i cannot tell if i am more
spinal column or fluid ice isn’t afraid of its multiple
selves it melts when it discovers that bravery
isn’t about the sword you bear then it flows
like a charmed dream unconcerned with being forgotten

This selection comes from Our Debatable Bodies, available from Animal Heart Press. Purchase your copy here! Our curator for this selection is Shannon Wolf.

Marisa Crane is a queer, nonbinary writer whose work has appeared or is forthcoming in TriQuarterly Review, Catapult, The Florida Review, F(r)iction, The Rumpus, and elsewhere. A graduate of Tin House’s 2020 Winter & Summer Workshops, she is the author of the poetry chapbook, Our Debatable Bodies (Animal Heart Press 2019), and she serves as a prose reader for The Adroit Journal. Born in Allentown, Pennsylvania, she currently lives in San Diego with her wife and baby.

Shannon Wolf is a British writer and teacher, living in Louisiana. She is currently a joint MA-MFA candidate in Poetry at McNeese State University. She is the Non-Fiction Editor of The McNeese Review, and Social Media Intern for Sundress Publications. She also holds an MA in Creative Writing from Lancaster University. Her poetry, short fiction, and non-fiction (which can also be found under the name Shannon Bushby) have appeared in The Forge and Great Weather for Media, among others. You can find her on social media @helloshanwolf.

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