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  • Writer's pictureSylvie Epstein

The Magnolia

by Sylvie Epstein

The magnolia is raining

And my bare arms tremble

Why does your nose sting when you’re about to cry?

I wrote once, about you, and the day with the crunchy leaves, and crying into my mother’s lap

I turn over.

The white cotton of my pillow is cool against my cheek

It feels like a deep breath and so I furrow my brows

Why must my chest feel so tight

I sit up and groan and put on Shelby Lynne

And think about how I should write you a book

Down the street, my red leather boots make me stand tall.

She sees me

and smiles

and waves

and invites me inside to sip tea and read

The others come.

Someone has told a joke and so everyone is laughing

Then later, the air is warm and I am in my aqua dress

Dinner was good, and I am full.

Then it is morning again. my chest is tight.

the pillow feels cool and like a deep breath. I sit and I groan. I furrow my brow.

I think about writing you a book.

The magnolia rains

Illustration by Kat Chen


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