The 2River View 21.2 (Winter 2017)

Ayla Fudala


I make up songs for my bones
They sound like sleigh bells

I call my tongue a pistol
And blow back my head

My lips shred
Into petals. I drink
A whole gallon of gasoline

You taste like pitch pine
And grit between my teeth like sand

I tear at your name,
but it won’t budge

I bless myself—
up, down, below

The line of crows keeps shouting
My cheeks are filled with your teeth

I carve you out of stone
And close your eyes with sea shells

The Stranger

My mother died today
Or yesterday, I can’t remember
A milkweed husk, floating
And now her house is filled with mice
Furring her piano keys like soft mold
Lining the breezeway with gray 
Like a gently breathing carpet
Crushed beneath my naked feet
And all the ticking clocks
Have become owls, which swivel their heads
To tell you the hour
And hoot twelve times at midnight

Ayla Fudala graduated in May 2016 from the University of Pennsylvania with majors in Environmental Studies and English. She has taught creative writing, worked at Penn’s Kelly Writers House, and edited for Symbiosis Magazine.

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