Teeth

Kathryn Merwin

A toothless moon on 43rd Street—somebody is crying, sirensin the city. I saw the color of your eyes. I saw you,kneeling in the brambles, sewer-rotpainted on your ankles, all tooth and skin and razorbladelike the jack knife I’ll use to cut out my tongueif they come for you, if they askwhere you’ve been hiding.Everything splinters. This is a placewhere the dead creak in trees, where their white eyesfollow the ones who howl—their cold,indigo blood. This is my famine—you,crouching in alleyways, broken bottles(God was in the bottles). Smackon black tongue, canines slowly turning brown. We rot like yellowed pumpkins. We shootuntil the barrel jams.

Feature Date

Series

Selected By

Share This Poem

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on email

Print This Poem

Share on print

Kathryn Merwin’s poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in journals such as Cutbank, Hayden’s Ferry Review, Hobart, Passages North, Sugar House Review, Prairie Schooner, and Blackbird. She has read and/or reviewed for the Bellingham Review and The Adroit Journal, and serves as co-editor-in-chief of Milk Journal. She received her MFA in poetry from Western Washington University and currently lives just outside of Baltimore. Connect with her at www.kathrynmerwin.com.

Volume 12 Number 1

Editor-in-Chief
Patty Paine

Diode Poetry Journal is looking for poetry that excites and energizes, that uses language that crackles and sparks. We’re looking for poetry from all points on the arc, from formal to experimental.

Poetry Daily Depends on You

With your support, we make reading the best contemporary poetry a treasured daily experience. Consider a contribution today.