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the things that live inside me / everything i’d never know

"pipevine swallowtail"

photo by Ross (Dragon)

the things that live inside me / everything i’d never know

by Kailey Tedesco

for the second time i’m told inside me

there is much witch, much angry mob

with pitchfork, no afterlife with too much

organized church. my grandmother

refuses touch for fear of curse, so

much blood oozes round my heart

upon the sight of a roadside cat, hurt

forever. i’m of the camp of sarcophagi

drinkers, any pastille to rebrand the very

etymology of lifeblood. even the titanic

left an amniotic sac around its china, rust

water to preserve the sketchwork, make

the remains vampiric for a new

passing animal. kiss me if you

want — i’m told my hysterics do

nothing for the creature, the menagerie

of obsidian showing the tigers

of my lounging soul splayed

on carpet & coffin. every life deemed

full or too short, but never between. if

grandmother, frightened beyond

belief by the thought of fortunes, has

a premonition much true

my heart will seep

& i will finally know taste.


Kailey Tedesco is the author of She Used to be on a Milk Carton (April Gloaming Publishing) and These Ghosts of Mine, Siamese (Dancing Girl Press). She is an associate editor for Luna Luna Magazine. Her manuscript Lizzie, Speak recently won White Stag Publishing's full-length poetry prize. You can find her work featured or forthcoming in Prelude, Phoebe Journal, Muse/A Journal, Sugar House Review, New South, and more. For further information, please visit

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