Green Hills Literary Lantern



Wearing a pine box to ankles

I made a sort of table between sawhorses.

Oh we’d dine fine tonight on their gullibility,

he laughed as he explained the ruse.

Now his solemn eye wavered between gray and hazel

as his saw spit sawdust, a rodent

running the flex of his muscular arm.


He’d doped me, so I doubted the first twinge,

the drag across my waist, the drip

hurrying into splash as the front row gasped.

My hands fell away, my legs had no one

to carry through summer’s garden.

I could tell he had no idea what

to do with two of me or the mob


that would howl at failed entertainment.

A moan rose like a waterspout

in advance of my separation.

How could it be anything other than this:

we see what we see, we know what we know,

there is no trick to save us from being

flesh. I was a body soon severed,

and who could claim to be surprised

that metal must have its way?





Joanne Lowery’s poems have appeared in many literary magazines, including Birmingham Poetry Review, 5am, Passages North, Atlanta Review, One Trick Pony and Poetry East. Her most recent collections are Medusa’s Darling from March Street Press and Seven Misters from Pygmy Forest Press. She lives in Michigan.