The Wardrobe’s Best Dressed: Book of Levitations by Jenny Sadre-Orafai & Anne Champion

This selection, chosen by Managing Editor Krista Cox, is from Book of Levitations by Jenny Sadre-Orafai & Anne Champion, released by Trembling Pillow Press in 2020. 


               Like boys, you too were born with power—
you just didn’t know how to steal,

               asking politely, your fingertips
under your friend’s body, chanting

               light as a feather, stiff as a board, waiting
for her to hover, searching the night

               for hidden constellations. Once,
you dreamed the moon turned red

               and split like a peach to nurture you.
Once, you asked a Ouija board

               who would marry you and it said
yes. You visited an old woman with tea leaves

               who envisioned a black hole
in your spirit. Your psychic pressed

               tarot cards to the table and said
that all your men would be lions

               or tigers. You took aura photos
and finally saw yourself as a prism of light

               refracted. You need no meteorologist—
your head throbs whenever there’s a storm.

Jenny Sadre-Orafai is the author of Paper Cotton Leather and Malak and the co-author of Book of LevitationsHer fourth poetry collection, Dear Outsidersis forthcoming from University of Akron Press. Her prose has appeared in The RumpusFourteen HillsThe Los Angeles Review, and others. She is co-founding editor of Josephine Quarterly and a professor at Kennesaw State University. 

Anne Champion is the author of She Saints & Holy Profanities (Quarterly West, 2019), The Good Girl is Always a Ghost (Black Lawrence Press, 2018), Book of Levitations (Trembling Pillow Press, 2019), Reluctant Mistress (Gold Wake Press, 2013), and The Dark Length Home (Noctuary Press, 2017). Her work appears in Verse Daily, Tupelo Quarterly, Prairie Schooner, Crab Orchard Review, Salamander, New South, Redivider, PANK Magazine, and elsewhere. She was a 2009 Academy of American Poets Prize recipient, a 2016 Best of the Net winner, and a Barbara Deming Memorial Grant recipient.


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