THE WITCH GATHERS MATERIALS
gar child sleeps in the attic, the light buttering her fish form. When she blows out the candles at night, gar child makes a fish shadow, her spine curved like a gator's.
gar child sweats a layer of marsh salt into her sheets. I sweep it from her blackened feet with a pastry brush, save the web of fin she's cut from her ankles with nail clippers.
gar child leaves blood clots in her shoes and shakes them out in the river. gar child pierces her ears with the bones of a frog.
gar child is afraid to sink into the tub, afraid the water will open her gills. Afraid, even worse, it won't.
Jennifer Hanks is the author of two forthcoming chapbooks, Prophet Fever (Hyacinth Girl Press) and The Unsteady Planet (Instar Books), a collaboration with illustrator Julie Herndon. Her work has appeared in Arcadia, Ghost Ocean, Menacing Hedge, Muzzle, [PANK], and Word Riot, among other journals. She is an assistant editor for Sundress Publications and an MFA candidate at the University of New Orleans.