The Wardrobe’s Best Dressed: Mixtape Venus by Dana Kinsey

This selection, chosen by guest editor Tierney Bailey, is from Mixtape Venus by Dana Kinsey, released by Iris G. Press in 2022.

my choice

a Golden Shovel after Gwendolyn Brooks

content warning for abortion

a woman is either petrified or jubilant if
she’s pregnant. You should know I
once poisoned
my thinking with the
notion that definite endings are easier than difficult beginnings.
Voices I clung to spoke of
your biological classification, your impossibility, reasons your
body (though poppyseed-small) should never know the breaths
that exhale to word and song and kiss. I
try (every day) to believe
as I dragged myself to the clinic and even
as I dared to arrange letters that could name you in
the turquoise sequined notebook stashed in my
nightstand, my deliberateness
was not crime or sin. I
(fancied you a rapture like dayspring or stardust and so) was
never, not
ever, going to use my pen to end your story (so dreamlike and deliberate)

Dana Kinsey is an actor and teacher published in Fledgling RagDrunk MonkeysONE ARTOn the Seawall, Sledgehammer Lit, West Trestle ReviewMacQueen’s Quinterly, Viewless Wings, The Champagne Room, Hive, SWWIM, Wild Roof Journal, Prometheus Dreaming, and Prose Online. Dana’s play, WaterRise, was produced at the Gene Frankel Theatre.  Her chapbook, Mixtape Venus, is published by I. Giraffe Press.

Tierney Bailey is a Libra, a lover of science fiction and poetry, and is a dice-collecting gremlin. Currently, Tierney is Associate Poetry Editor with Sundress Publications, a copyeditor at Strange Horizons, Associate Editor with PodCastle, and a freelance graphic designer. She has earned a BA from the University of Indianapolis and a Masters Degree in Writing, Literature, and Publishing from Emerson College.

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