From poetry

Lilliwap

You mumble, your head burps nonsense, words a river of babble-rousing slippitude. Your foot is sucked into your mucky mouth. Roughly hewn orange trees produce fleshy furniture for unforgettable chatter that exists only in your shower along with the mildew creeping up like kudzu. Notes are stuffed into your pockets along with old lottery tickets…

The Fifth Season

Now it’s tsuyu, the stifling June rain. Your hands are making me hot and we feel relentless. Rancid, my buttery foreignness. You hover, a mosquito in a love-stained room. I smell the rotting tatami.     ABOUT THE AUTHOR Alexandra Corrin-Tachibana started reciting poetry at age five, when she attended Speech and Drama lessons in…

This is America

“I’ll take you to the grocer’s,” my mother said, and took me to the supermarket. She led me to the shelf where each loaf of bread was cocooned in its plastic wrapping. When no one was watching she gave a loaf a punch worthy of Sonny Liston. As the Wonder Bread reinflated she said, “This…

Via Dolorosa

The tumor the size of an egg yolk in my father’s stomach was not the same as the astrocytoma on my mother’s cervical spine, which differed still from the adenoid cystic carcinoma on my husband’s parotid gland. My father’s collapse, treatment, remission, recurrence and resignation followed a sequence unlike my mother’s mysteriously painful slide into…

Laundry Day

Your smell of mint and citrus infused in my pillowcase, Becoming a tea bag of spices steamed to the precipice of oblivion. I don’t want to wash my sheets but a chocolate stain calls for detergent attention. “Eating chocolate in bed?” Your mouth sputters, air escaping from a carbonated glass, Pleasant and causing your eyes…

Fontasia

Arial is the cruelest font, snatching Supremacy from sleeping Helvetica, We mourn her in Light Bas Relief, and Sip shimmering glasses of chilled Sans Serif I could have been a pair of curling commas Crawling black across the death-white page So we trouble and toil with fraudulent Lucida And try to divine just who or…

Shoulder Me

In the lobby, after the show, “Dad,” you said, and touched his shoulder. That was all I heard, or needed to. I sat here once, your fingers said. I saw the world you showed me. The view was what it was— a bay, a bridge, a vacation or two. Perhaps a parade or a just-reached…

Six Shooter Blues

Abe Lincoln just came back and started taking selfies. Meanwhile, the hipster army turned every bar into a museum with names like “Where are all the honest men?” Witches were flying matchsticks ‘round the minimum wage, daily pay crowd, flaunting faces like goblins and legs of steel. The cowboys paid no mind and were riding…

Scranton is Getting Bad

I. Scranton is getting bad. There’s so many house fires, Most of them arson. And drugs, and drug busts too. I’m not unhappy here. I love the place. It’s cozy & nothing much to do. The mayor put Scranton in a hole. A couple of stores went out of business. Some come in for a…

Far from Home

She picks a conch shell out of the pile in the terra cotta pot. Thousands of miles from its home and still the shell spills sand from its center. She wants to crawl in, cup a beach in her hands. Listen to the prose of the ocean— Tell me about your emptiness. Tell me about…