Dean Symmonds: When It Blacks My Eye
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i love the south like i hate my mother when this land burns it dont crumble like a childhood homes arsoned bones no it smolders like the wet meat of a lovers maw and when it blacks my eye on the kitchen table it apologizes with a whiskey creek humming thru my backyard instead of spit on the wound and when i grandmother it the south dont pack baby shower confetti in my pill bottle no it taps lead in my water pipes til my monster maker turns inside out the lush of it the bloodrush of it the pinprickspined thing with our sickness coiled in its gut ready to nest in its small small head—

my baby woulda angelled that rattlesnake right out but at least when the south kisses me like mama did it keeps its tongue outta my mouth


Dean Symmonds is a lesbian poet from the South seeking zir BA in Creative Writing at Hollins University. Ze works as a Poetry Editor at Persephone's Daughters, and is an alumna of the Hollows Shout the Mountains Down Winter Tangerine workshop. Zir poems have been published in magazines like [empath], Gravel, The Album, and Crab Fat Magazine, and are forthcoming in Monstering. You can find zem on Twitter @poetpersephone.