Poem: Jamie Mortara

Illo for Jamie Mortara's poem.


you ask me to outline
what my ideal partner would be like
so i lay myself down on the floor
and hand you some chalk
i’ve seen a lot of dead mice i tell you
i miss the fire i tell you
even if i was a terrified little creature
stuck in the chimney
choking on dust
i was so
so warm
and of course i was afraid
the way she could hold a grudge
like a badge of honor
like a torch
like a furnace
keeping the house from freezing over
i woke to Unforgiveness
like a smoke alarm every morning
the way she was convinced
we were both such Appaloosas
when i was so small
so paralyzed
in the underbrush
the horse never wanted to hurt me
but have you ever been trampled?
it’s just fear
and i can’t blame any animal
for being scared
jamie mortara (they/them/their) is a queer poet and publisher based in Portland, Oregon. they are founder of the audio magazine Voicemail Poems as well as the indie chapbook and zine press Impossible Wings. their debut full-length poetry collection some planet is available through YesYes Books with another forthcoming soon. more of jamie’s work can be found at http://jamiemortara.com.

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