BUDDHIST FIRE-EATER by Susan Michele Coronel

BUDDHIST FIRE-EATER

Each time she strikes a match, she tilts her head
back, imagines she is entering a Coke bottle’s

glass neck, swallowing the last threads of sulfur
before its saw-toothed cap snaps on.

After she seals her lips around the head
of torch, she exhales with ease

to release the flames of attachment
she has been holding her entire life.

A siren of gratitude widens its range.
What is empty cannot be destroyed.

*

Susan Michele Coronel lives in New York City. She has a B.A. in English from Indiana University-Bloomington and M.S.Ed. in Applied Linguistics from the City University of New York. Her poems have been published in or are forthcoming in publications including The Night Heron Barks, Prometheus Dreaming, Amethyst Review, Hoxie Gorge Review, TAB Journal, Ekphrastic Review, and Passengers Journal.

Fire and Flood by Kristin Garth

Fire and Flood
(as two Barbie Dreamhouses)

Some have a Barbie dreamhouse as a child.
First I bought, myself, my 20’s, with cash
compiled in strip clubs, a girl going wild
in plaid. Until a stranger lit a match
to burn down everything I had accrued
with lewd choreography. Second an
abuser bought for me, an overdue
idyllic acrylic home that’s briefly
my own, reparations I will choose
to accept. Plastic families are easy
to protect, it would seem. This one I lose
by flood, recluse who lets nobody
in, no men, though this strategy is flawed.
Even plastic is not safe from acts of God.

*

Kristin Garth is a Pushcart, Best of the Net and Rhysling nominated sonnet stalker. She is the author of 20 books of poetry including Flutter Southern Gothic Fever Dream, The Meadow and Candy Cigarette Womanchild Noir. Read her poetry journal Pink Plastic House a tiny journal where she is the Dollhouse Architect. Listen to her weekly sonnet podcast called Kristin Whispers Sonnets on Anchor, Spotify and Apple Podcasts. Visit her site Kristingarth.com and talk to her on Twitter @lolaandjolie