I never told anyone but

I’ll tell you.

About the fire

Folding up my tongue,


The last counted hour

With my stomach shrinking

Toward my graveyard spine.

My body wanted to be pins


And needles,

Balancing voided meals with

Cigarettes. Burn marshmallow

Fat like burning up



Campfire chocolate,

Childhood knobbles

In my rounded knees.


My body was statistical.

It was burned and tarred

And feathered. Monster me,

An under-the-bed story.


Cool dinnertime untruths,

Tamed, lightheaded.



The daily dizzy shrivel, the

Ribby abdomen poke, the

Airbrush collapse. Spark,

Sear, scissor open

The new pack.


by Alison Lanier


Alison Lanier is a Boston-based writer and graduate of Wellesley College. She recently joined the editorial team at The Critical Flame. Her fiction, reviews, articles, and essays have appeared or are forthcoming in Atticus Review, Counterpoint Magazine, and The Wellesley Review, where she also served as editor.


Listed at Duotrope
Listed with Poets & Writers
CLMP Member
List with Art Deadline
Follow us on MagCloud