Something Lost by Penelope Layland

Safe outside and inwhat we have lost is half of heaventhe dark half, the half light, the dark against whichthe light of creation still streams,the black pelt of 2am with galaxies thrown across it.All auroras, low lustres, enfolding ink washed away,no match for the street light, headlight, lamppostthe hand-holding city, the amber for idlingthe lowContinue reading “Something Lost by Penelope Layland”

Climate by Jenni Mazaraki

It comes and goes, this cold dropA sheet draped over panic, not delicate Not even the well of water in holiday snapsOver magnificent falls will smother the burn It’s a drowning of sorts, but much slowerA slow reveal of devastation Saltwater rising, lapping at new school shoesAsh scented sky landing on ribbons in freshly brushedContinue reading “Climate by Jenni Mazaraki”

Daughter by Danusha Laméris

I always wanted a daughter, which isto say, I wanted a better self, flecked from my marrow—madeflesh. I wanted this bone-of-my-bones to move in the world, exceptionaland unharmed. Not this world. But a world almost exactly unlike it. Samepaved streets and street cafés, same slow unfurl of spring. Only in that world,the green of fieldContinue reading “Daughter by Danusha Laméris”

Harvesting Tips by Cate Kennedy

You planted them, so you know they’re under there.Find a soft spot. This could take half a day.Then put your boot on the fork, and let it sink. Choose a dry day, so that you won’t wrench your backturning soil heavy with water and risen clay.The leaves and stalks will look finished,black with early frost.DoContinue reading “Harvesting Tips by Cate Kennedy”

Thinking the room empty by Cate Kennedy

I am being told a long story of a chain of coincidences.A friend, losing her way in the desert,walks out of a dry Alice Springs riverbed intothirty thousand milesof flat ruled horizon, blazing heat, waterless saltbush. She finds a fence and walks along it.A sign tells her she has reached a rifle rangeand, in theContinue reading “Thinking the room empty by Cate Kennedy”

Toolangi by Simone King

She is on the last frontier, the edgeof forest as she knows it. She breathesin air frost-laced and petrichor and surveysthe scene, looking for a landing. There is none,the crater’s gaping mouth has eaten mountainash, messmate, and spat out splinters. A single fernstands in the epicenter, its fronds touching no one.Her babe moves inside her,Continue reading “Toolangi by Simone King”

Uneven Ground by Laura Grace Weldon

He wants to fill in the pasture’s low spots.I say no, no, nothese are magic spaces.When winter comes they ice overnightto crunch like candy under toddler boots.Each spring, puddles leap into being,just deep enough to wriggle with tadpoles.Drying into mud, they entice butterfliesto drink salts in a crowded aerial whiffle.Why even anything out?These depressions ofContinue reading “Uneven Ground by Laura Grace Weldon”

The Comeback of Speedos by Tishani Doshi

I’ll keep this brief. I remember the shock of Mr. G’s tiger-striped trunks  at the Madras Gymkhana Club. Nothing to conceal, everything to  declare, like a Mills & Boon hero. Shiver of ball and sack, acres of hairy scrub. We could not imagine such freedom for ourselves. To slice through chlorinated depths with a littleContinue reading “The Comeback of Speedos by Tishani Doshi”

Unsolicited Pictures by Nancy Miller Gomez

She’s sitting in a crowded subway car, zipping through email messageson her phone and minding her own business when it appears:a photo of a man’s penis. — CNN The first pic was blurry, so she might not have been sure.The second one resolved all doubt. The hand grasping it faced up so she could see theContinue reading “Unsolicited Pictures by Nancy Miller Gomez”