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Connie Post


One part of the body

turns against the other


reacts as if an enemy

has invaded


the war against

friendly fire

goes on for years

possibly decades


one doctor

after another

gives pills in doses

unrecognizable to

your broken mouth


late at night you read

one medical article

after another

trying to understand

why the armed forces

attacked a sovereign

place in the body


you toss and turn

the siege goes on


you sleep

you love

you banish yourself

from your own bed


you watch yourself

line up words

inside your mind

a small army


from afar




This is not your body

it does not belong to you

it is not the one

that left the sallow rooms of home

circa 1980

never to return


this is not the body

who entered the hallway

of a college dormitory

and knew not a soul

who carried English books

like a soldier carries ammunition


this is not the body

that left the same college town

pregnant with a son

with a man you knew

would someday leave


this is not the body

who gave birth and

bid farewell to a womb

who carried two babies


this is not the body

who falls into anesthesia

and counts the stitches like shame


this is not the body

you return to

each murky dusk


this is the body you were told to smite

this is the body you hid inside

this is the body you cradled


this is the body

that knows the sound of a belt

removed before a beating


this is the body that knows

how to leave

like a song rising from nothing

like music leaving a cathedral





you never of thought of it

as rough


because even while inside you

he can’t reach the part of you

that is holy


because if you asked him,

to let go of your wrists

he would


because begging for more

is always


even when your bones

are nailed to your own oppression



you said it was okay

while you were suffocating


because you still have

to sleep next to him


because there is a

gag order underneath the mattress


because your mouth

becomes an elegy

in the middle of the night


because there is a séance

imbedded in the ritual

of sleep


and the night

will never tell you

how long it takes

to drown in your own starlight 

-from Between Twilight, selected by Assistant Editor, Karen Carr 


Connie Post is a San Francisco Bay Area Poet who has been writing and publishing for over thirty years. Her work has received praise from Al Young, Ursula LeGuin, Ellen Bass, Maxine Chernoff, Dean Rader, Diane Suess, and former US Poet Laureate Juan Herrera. Her first full length collection “Floodwater” was the winner of the 2014 Lyrebird Award from Glass Lyre Press. Her second full length collection “Prime Meridian” was released in January of 2020. (Glass Lyre Press) Prime Meridian was a finalist in the 2020 Best Book Awards, 2021 International Book Awards and the 2020 American Fiction Awards. (American Book Fest). Prime Meridian was selected as a distinguished favorite in the 2022 Independent Press Awards. Her most recent full length collection “Between Twilight” was published by New York Quarterly books in 2023. She has three chapbooks. The first two are from Finishing Line Press “And When The Sun Drops” and “Trip Wires”.  Her most recent chapbook, “Broken Metronome” was published by Glass Lyre Press in 2023. It was named a distinguished favorite in the NYC Big Book Awards and was the winner of the 2023 American Fiction Awards (American Book Fest) for a poetry chapbook.

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