« Michael Schiavo | Contents | David Blumenshine »

Colleen Louise Barry




I thought I said plain and I get cream-filled.


I thought I could teach people with my life but I get tired.

I thought I’d write undramatically. then you roll into the room.


my heart is the dirty dish rag of my organs

you keep wringing it out


I must soak it in whiskey

and rub it on your toothache




when we met I was working as a wound engineer

and you had cancel of the liver


you alarmed off

I had the paste of a deer


we spoke in accidents


it was a rough start




these are tropically flavored vitamin c packets


I requested the orange




“something befriends me and hurts

at the corners of each thing I love.”




in the darkness we root around

and call for each other.


we look for my glasses.




last night while we lay down some old woman poured thick milk

from an old-fashioned fold out carton

with a missing boy drawn on the side

all over us

and we can’t get the fine film off of our eyes


people like to ask why

do you work in this style or that style

as if you have a choice


what you are doing is trying to stay alive




when I close my eyes you smell cold rain.

see moon written across my lids.


I put the soles of my feet together in front of you.

I have a history in showers

with you.


everything I love is a piece of paper.



we wanted to be good people

but we didn’t have enough money.


so we called it our love

even in a coma

without knowing the number.




now we are done

with words.


and on to the next world.






god shot his cold man eyes

down from the sky and said 

shut up.




a bowl of skeleton

wakes up nearby 


my mom of the rafters 

beyond the crystal pine


her hair gets stuck

in my head.




I remember screaming into the phone 

for a pizza, 


wanting to touch you. 


there was not enough protection.







she has a dream about you

during which you save her from

the house. it is burning.


I am inclined to believe this

more or less happens

all the time.




we like to kick the flaky beehive

by the rotted shed.


run screaming into the lake.


we like everything

in ruin

is everything





clouds anvils ash.

even so


we swim until dark

and look up.


stars like teeth.


the lake at night

is silent and cool.

how you are.




you never shut up.


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