Ashley Roach-Freiman is a librarian and MFA candidate at the University of Memphis where she is Managing Editor of the Pinch Journal. She has poems appearing or forthcoming in Tinderbox Poetry Journal, THRUSH Poetry Journal, Rock & Sling, Smartish Pace, district lit, The Literary Review and Bone Bouquet. She coordinates and hosts the Impossible Language reading series in Memphis, TN.
sorry about the poem with feathers
i know you don’t like how they this
& this with glass stare
with unerr gaze with
away stay with neck
sorry about the poem that spent air
that spun & spun sky
heat glaze & brood
the poem that beats the window glass
sunglare leaf lime bright let
the great globe twirl & settle
flight flight &
sorry about the poem that breaks brittle
hollow bones, worm pecked hunger
God-hole to God-hole what makes
a danger in a body what makes a body
Seven of Swords, Reversed
Thinking about my not lover,
an ant trail winding
a hundred miles. What I would give to not love
Tell me what it looks like to have
ants running down both arms.
Fruit or flower?
Tell me my head is not a wormy loam.
Tell me my tongue is not a bitten place.
The card shows seven heavy swords. A burden.
Reversed it means put your shoes on and carry them.
Reversed it means break free break free break free.
I bit a stranger’s persimmon mouth in an alley.
This is one way to run: beetle-writhe.
Tell me my love is an uninhabitable planet
and I will not reach him in a spaceship of talking.
My not lover is a not lover.
On this planet. On any planet.
When upright, the card means betrayal.
Reversed, the card means look and keep looking.
Today my husband left a single red poppy
in a bottle in the window.
I look and I look and, not looking, I look again.