LAURA E. MILLER
You laughed and suggested I dream of bugs.
And there were. Crawling between the pages of my book,
the folds in the quilt, eight red dots on the thorax
like rubies in the bottom of a mug
filled with poison. Also you stole an ambulance, and
the whole time I was thinking what about the emergency?
Or the pictures on the billboards? They were all of my sisters,
and when we got to the restaurant they hid in a tiny cardboard house
that had tornado written all over it.
Sometimes that’s how it feels, looking at the cat-shaped
hole you just dug in the ground. Like you could alter a voice
into a different ghostchild. The soon-to-be felon
smiles in his mugshot because there’s only so many ways
you can build a body before you’re just slapping parts together
haphazardly, the leg connected to the sternum, the eyes
just off center in the middle of one left palm. The whole thing
falls apart if you don’t remember to time yourself. Sun-up
to sun-down. Last night you said there would be bugs.
And laughed. The sound I heard:
one million eyes, turned inward
and counting the dots on the bodies
of tiny things that can only be suggested.
Laura E. Miller received her Bachelor’s in Poetry from Columbia College Chicago in May 2013. She was raised in Louisville, Kentucky, and currently lives in Chicago with all of her cats. Her work has also appeared in Columbia Poetry Review no. 26.