POETRY July 8, 2022


the girl is holding unrotten strawberries,
how could i not love her? i don’t want to
talk too loud. i’m worried one of us will wake up.
we walk by a field of tulips & i almost notice
each one is shaped like an open wound, but i don’t.
not for another six months. her fingers are tired
so i unbutton myself for her, ask her to look inside
me for something i’ve been missing. all i can say
is it’s been thumping in my gut since i was twelve.
she doesn’t see anything in me. i nod, touch her cheek
& we fall asleep. i hear you can’t write a poem without
the truth and i can only write about the way she swallowed
the sun. it ends how it always ends: i wake up
alone. it’s february.

Sydney Vogl recently won the Jane Underwood Poetry prize & the AWP Intro Journals Award. Their work has been featured in or is forthcoming in Iron Horse Review, Honey Literary, Tusculum Review and Ghost City Review. She currently serves as a poetry editor for The San Franciscan Magazine and works at an independent publisher in Berkeley. Their debut chapbook, CALIFORNIA IS GOING TO HELL, was released in November 2021.