The Wardrobe’s Best Dressed: She by Theadora Siranian

This selection, chosen by Managing Editor Krista Cox, is from She by Theadora Siranian, released by Seven Kitchens Press in 2021.

Gala and the Tigers

All the airplanes are disappearing.

With their thin seats and bright engine lights
they take off into the woodchipper grinding away

outside my window. I lie in bed and listen to them go.

Something is not one thing but an unwinding
set of lines tracing a perpetual lack of comfort,

the sweater snagged, what people avoid calling the eventual,
the world growing smaller as it grows larger.

The silence of those back bedroom days becoming less
violent, but more threatening. All those notes taped

to the kitchen cupboards no longer encoded—the weather
of broken ribs and genetic discontent now formulas

for sadness and grocery lists, almanacs for snowfall and heat.
A room built of acid and honey, an iron cage

strewn with irises: watching someone lost grow old.

The waves look like wounds from 17,000 feet, sinew
of salt and motion. In the dream it’s morning and I find her.

Ten floors down, naked, a giant stretched out in the parking lot.

The animals are gone, her skin shredded, her body finally
void of complexities. Death aesthetic and austere, the body,

this moment, just another in a long collection of artifacts
missing their middleground, and here, see:

a pomegranate sliced open in the palm of my hand.

Theadora Siranian is a graduate of the MFA Program at the University of Massachusetts, Boston. Her poetry has appeared in Best New Poets, Ghost City Review, Rust + Moth, and Atticus Review, among others. In 2013, she was a finalist for The Poet’s Billow Pangaea Prize, and in 2014 was shortlisted for both the Mississippi Review Prize and Southword’s Gregory O’Donoghue International Poetry Prize. In 2019, Theadora received the Emerging Woman Poet Honor from Small Orange Journal. She currently lives and teaches at Nazarbayev University in Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan, where she is also a poetry editor for Angime, the first trilingual literary journal in the country.


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