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  • Writer's pictureThe Blue and White Magazine

Measure for Measure, October 2019

from nancy’s charcoaled hands

look – you can see from the street below. we have her rusted poppies on our wall

in their olive stems i see her twig arms

they shoot bullets through canvas  and writhe through still air

her tapered fingers ink the fiery blossoms 

holes left by tungsten cartridges gape at their centers

I have seen goats in bonnets etched intestine from her downtown room

she warms our eggshell mantel above the hearth

we have her poppies and her bleeding green

grocery monster somewhere

how odd how warm he makes me how warm he makes the the room

– Sylvie Claire Epstein


In time they shortened everything for me.

It began with sleeves and hair, the edge of my fan,

which grazed the watery dirt.

It spread to my school, my meals, my lengthy plans to flee. When they saw that I danced, that too was banned– In time, they shortened it for me.

It creeped upon me slowly. I was stricken and alert. I kept a wobbly pen in hand, which grazed the watery dirt.

They cut apart my songs, my prized philosophy And everybody that I met, they flowed away from me. They shortened it for me.

I’d like to say a word or two in praise of all of this But there waits the ghoul on my desk, clock and knife in hand In the watery dirt.

In time, everything was shortened for me. In the watery dirt.

– Carly Roth


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