By Brett Elizabeth Jenkins

My hip bones carry/ around the names of the dead/ like sagging parentheses./ When I sit they heavy me./ When I stand, they pull/ down my shoulders. When/ it rains, they tender/ and swell until I’m full/ of an air that goes in my bones./ I go to meetings/ and stare. I go to the store/ and buy the wrong salad dressing./ I turn off all the lights/ and unplug all of my appliances./ I walk quietly to the edge of a cliff.

(Today’s poem originally appeared in Thrush Poetry Journal and appears here today with permission from the poet.)

Brett Elizabeth Jenkins lives and writes in Saint Paul. She is the author of Ether/Ore (NAP Chaps, 2012), and in 2012 was nominated for Best of the Net. Look for her work in Beloit Poetry Journal, PANK, Potomac Review, RHINO, and elsewhere.

Editor’s Note: Today’s poem is working on a number of levels, from its title that echoes both personal and formal failure to its ability to capture a sense of loss and locate it within the body. Moments of unique lyric imagery and quiet contemplation come together so that the poem reads like a deep breath and a sigh.

Want to read more by and about Brett Elizabeth Jenkins?
PANK Magazine
Brett Elizabeth Jenkins’ Official Blog – The Angry Grammarian
Buy Ether/Ore from Nap

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