Poetry from Sara Ryan

Read More: A brief interview with Sara Ryan

A Girl Sings Into A Well

it is deep and gaping.
of course,
her voice echoes like a bell.

of course,
her lips are humming sticks.

her song is a leather bucket carrying the water.

of course,
I am afraid of her. of the way

she opens her throat like a thirsty orchid—

she is an inevitable girl
in seven aching ways.

her body arched over the lip
of the well—

its mortared stones digging
into her, a familiar mutation of breath.

sometimes I am the girl, pushing sounds
from my neck until I feel solid again. clacking

rebar against the rock.

a bird ricochets against
the tunnel underneath a city.

of course, I am afraid
that when I wake up I will not remember.

more afraid,     of course,
that the remembering

becomes my voice.

lifting from my mouth
like a wet

and sorry moth.

 

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For a Moment

taking a picture of a picture is a reverie—the photo paper
a white glare of light. the glass in the frame is another
fragile layer. I am in my father’s office surrounded

by his shiny black synthesizer equipment, waiting
for the printer to work. its dumb body groaning
with ink and confusion. next to the desk lamp,

a small silver frame. beveled edges. slippery
velvet backing. my grandfather inside—handsome,
young. the side of his suit jacket tucked behind his hip,

his hand on his belt. the wind blowing his tie askew.
the backdrop, a silky blue curtain. my grandmother
next to him. cat-eye glasses. gingham shirt dress.

biting her lip. not dead at all. it’s almost like I am meeting
her in this glass box. we are shifting our names
around in our pockets. the clumsy letters mixing and splitting […]


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Sending a Book to a Boy

the boy from louisiana was short
and told me way too much over the phone.
he stopped talking to me after i drove
to chicago to meet him. this was a small […]


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Our rates are variable so that everyone can enjoy outstanding literature.
Access this and all our bi-weekly publications (and submit for free).

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Sara Ryan is a third-year poetry MFA candidate at Northern Michigan University and an associate poetry editor for Passages North. Her work has been published in or is forthcoming from Tinderbox, Slice Magazine, New South, Third Coast, Fairy Tale Review, The Blueshift Journal, Yemassee, Third Point Press and others. Her chapbook, but pink but want but blue, was a finalist in the Slapering Hol Press 2017 Chapbook Competition.

Read More: A brief interview with Sara Ryan