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by Chi Sherman


When we broke, I called myself a mosaic
and poured venom into claret acrylic
to craft a new shade of revenge.
I was born again
but found myself crying at stoplights,
in the shower,
in the bathroom at work under the pretense of pissing.
I ordered Chinese food for two,
cradled your pillow, wore your clothes
beneath my own. How desperate I was
for your wound: your clumsy fingers,
your mute stare during arguments, your back
to me when I craved conversation. 

But when we were match and kindling, I knew
the cinnamon taste of fire. You knew when
to be newspaper, when to bear water. I became
limber beneath your ministrations, thought of names
for children not yet born, began to believe
forever was coming true. Finally, it became clear –
the Jungian analysis of my dreams;
your almond-shaped mouth a prequel to arsenic;
the breaking point of paper before it bursts into flame. 

Fact is cloaked in fantasy, I tell my barren womb,
remembering childhood, fireflies, and dusk,
a bevy of green lights, how I failed to grasp
the threat of entombment. Maybe next time,
I sigh and start over, though I long
for your mason jar mouth, glass walls, suffocation.

star woman
by Chi Sherman


the sky is bruised indigo
newsprint and an outstretched
palm shelter you from the rain

the sun goddess waits for you
waits patiently while you ignore
the bounty of the universe
plaster busts
fevered bluster
and throaty barter

this daughter of diana’s womb
gives you mango and melon
and fills you with warm porridge
the darkness has faded
into the benevolent bustle of market day 

warrior woman of light and heat
takes you by the hand
the softness remains
there is more courage than quiver
to be sure

you are not hardened
look to the blue black sky
at midnight
and rejoice

Chi Sherman is an Indianapolis-based writer whose preferred mediums are poetry and creative nonfiction. She has produced four chapbooks of her writing and two spoken-word CDs. Her work has appeared on HuffPo, The Body Is Not An Apology website, Brave Voices, and in Indianapolis publications.