Bethany Carlson


The day it rained clothespins
I was combing my hair. The paper cup
began to melt in your lap &
we could see distant relatives of
yellow-crowned night heron
fishing for caskets under a sky
as smooth as your mother’s
blue saucer. The air
was salty like pairs of shoelaces
left out in the rain. People
began buying binoculars in droves of
seven. I tried lifting
you out of the Kaleido-Whirl
but someone put me in a trance
of green/yellow/red. Mean-
while, the woman with the cateyed
glasses is frowning. I can’t
see past the goblets of distilled
grape juice. The grass
flashes violet before turning
green. The fruit trees never looked
so ambidextrous
, you are saying—
Go on.
Much to our chagrin, a broken
mandolin dangles from the roof
of this eight-year-old home. On
these warm nights, we feast
on sailboat-sized cubes of ice.

Bethany Carlson is an MFA candidate at the University of Arkansas this fall. She has been published in Caesura, The Cedarville Review, Ruminate Magazine, The Covenant Home Altar, and Wicked Alice. She recently won second place in the poetry division of the 2007 Conference on Christianity & Literature Student Writing Contest, as well as Honorable Mention in the 2008 Utmost Christian Writers Poetry Contest.

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