by Miranda Dennis
The young woman at the creek’s edge wants only to hustle loose the snapping turtle caught in wild grasses, which the hurricane floods have made unconquerable and wild, as if beasts, as if hexed nets coming to life. Bubbles escaping like question marks. The young woman wants only the yellow hammock strung between two pale birches, slender and elegant, fit for some invisible piano earmarked by the sky. The sun shines. It hasn’t done that in a long while. The young woman is ankle wet and in a sundress the color of glare on windowpane, as young women caught suddenly by light on creek often are. She is studying to give birth, not her own but countless swollen women unknown and unnamed, their bodies a churn, a whirlpool, a suffering wind. She will pry them loose, send them down a rush of current, wash her hands in what the gravel makes clear.
Miranda Dennis studied at Hollins University and the University of Massachusetts-Amherst’s MFA Program for Poets and Writers. Her poetry has previously been published in Meridian, storySouth, and Jellyfish Magazine with forthcoming work in Cold Mountain Review. Additionally, her essays have appeared in Quail Bell Magazine and Granta online. She works in digital advertising in Manhattan and goes home nightly to the vibrant borough of Queens, where she lives with a fat cat and the rumble of planes landing overhead.