The Wardrobe’s Best Dressed: The Animal At Your Side by Megan Alpert


Piano with a house inside
traveled across the country
to be played by my father
at midnight. Note-ghosts
floated up past the sleeping dog

to my room. My father and I
weren’t speaking, and the box
my grandmother kept
her hairpins in was more lost
than ever. She was born

in the Third Ward, Newark.
At sixty, began to play
and let nobody hear
but my grandfather. Then
she died, and the sound

was stored in a box only Myer
could find. He died too
and the house was gone,
except in the piano
sometimes though hardly

anyone played. Hear it talking
fadedly of the footshapes
left in her stockings,
those letters we never saw,
of their old whites and blues.

This selection comes from The Animal at Your Side, available from Airlie Press. Purchase your copy here! Our curator for this selection is Shannon Wolf.

Megan Alpert grew up in the suburbs of New York City and has since lived in St. Paul, Seattle, Boston, Washington, DC, and Quito, Ecuador. She is the recipient of an Orlando Poetry Prize from A Room of Her Own Foundation and residencies at the Vermont Studio Center, Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, The Studios at MASS MoCA, and the Marquette Chamber Residency. As a journalist, Alpert has received fellowships from Foreign Policy and the International Women’s Media Foundation. She has worked as a sandwich maker, bookseller, child caregiver, ESL teacher, journalist, and editor.

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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