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Fall '23


Now the Earth with many flowers puts on

her spring embroidery 

 — Sappho


A substance pressed onto this fresh linguistic site—

how do I explain myself into place, find answers

the lady at the embassy will be delighted to

hear. When I emigrate that is called a recount,

a renewed contact, a deleted number &

name. When I moved schools, I stood a cylindershrew,

slippery. At the old school I had one friend at a time—

now define friend, define contact. The next city

has custody of me. I don't talk to mum anymore,

I send money despite / despite. My first

apartment is stacked with recumbent propulsion—

an Akkadian precursor, instinct, daughters &

daughters ago. There was a stone tablet where I stand:

packed with a letter of awe & nerve; her mother

complained of never seeing her anymore.


The last woman I want to be is a dead

       silica sunset solid of compressed skin / like the old

       wives tales warn / silica kills —


I strive to be the only immortal woman.

       I pray for a tool other than my eyes, for my mouth to

       function —


all planets stare at you, all you've had are eyes,

       you were watched in the old bedroom where you

       spent most your time —


On the twenty first, I fly to France, the new

       bedroom is vulgar & a gizelle doses off all day here

       like a cat, eyes of a victim —


& stomach chambers of a hedonist. So a

       gizelle usually flees at the sight of a human / but

       me, I am ok —


to it / I don't want to lose my vision

       to a staring contest with a sun of sand / it knows

       this: to be dead in another place.

Dorothy Lune is a Yorta Yorta poet, born in Australia & a Best of the Net 2024 nominee. Her poems have appeared in Overland Journal, Many Nice Donkeys & more. She is looking to publish her manuscripts, can be found online @dorothylune, & has a substack at

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