A Poem by Lauren Yarnall

Lauren Yarnall

Lauren Yarnall

Lauren Yarnall is currently attending Salisbury University, where she will graduate with a BA in Creative Writing. She works as the poetry editor for Salisbury’s literary journal, The Scarab. Previous works can be found in Harpur Palate and Barely South Review.

Wolf Peach

On a swing, she bled
out. Her sister took her
before decay
began, soaked the blossoming 
stain in ice water, and told her
she could bleed. She carried this
to Japan, Florida, Germany; carried
with each of her three
(a whispered four) 
children. She refused to say
goodbye, only see
you later

and after the surgery, 
she could only sing
Happy Birthday, and then not 
even that.

I helped her pick
tomatoes. (They can grow almost 
anywhere warm 
and damp.) I followed 
her as she cupped them in 
her dimpled hands (my 
hands dimpled). They spilled
over the rims of our baskets. Much later, 

he said I grew
on him like a tomato vine, 
and laughed. (I expected
a flower.) It’s a good thing
he said. Those things grow like
crazy. Before that, he said 
I was cold.

I watched the hospice worker smoke
a cigarette in the rain. My cousins 
asked for rainbows, bluebirds. I didn’t ask
because I didn’t. If you want to feel
broken, listen: the pipes, the pipes are calling.
I want                             them
to break.