SWWIM publishes, celebrates, & promotes women, women-identifying & Femme-presenting writers through a Miami-based reading series & the online poetry journal SWWIM Every Day.

Powerlessness

I thought I had exhausted all my metaphors: various prey; coins

inserted slant, jamming vending machines; cartoon hand over cartoon

mouth. I studied grim histories of hysterical patients, listened

to accounts of fish who change their sex to breed. I thought I knew what all

there is to know about glass: a viscous liquid forced to acquiesce

to rigidity. If I could learn the posture well enough I’d know

how to unlearn it. I practiced exhaustively. I was practicing

today as I sat smoking. Next door three men were lowering a door-

sized piece of plywood from the building’s distant roof. Above, one reversed

a winch while below another gathered slack, taming the spent plywood’s

wild twists. A third man stood, watched the plank pirouette toward several windows,

waited for the swinging scrap to reach the ground. You think I’m telling you

the story of the plank; how it feels to be trussed, grappled over. But

I am the third man, waiting for some purpose to come into my hands.


KT Herr is or was: queer poet, songwriter, and grilled cheese enthusiast; advisory board member for Write616; poetry editor for The 3288 Review; host of WYCE’s Electric Poetry; Retort Slam finalist; writing workshop facilitator; MFA candidate in poetry at Sarah Lawrence College (2020). Her poems have been published with Pilgrimage Magazine, Punch Drunk Press, and Francis House, and her nonfiction has appeared in Goat’s Milk Magazine. She lives in Yonkers with someone else’s cat.

The Church Office in the Summertime

So That He May Step into the Tender Light