The 2River View 21.1 (Fall 2016)

Amanda Wells

Dusk, Near Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery

Lying alone in this unfeeling place,
he searches. The pit of his war-ravaged
soul expands, fills empty infinite space
among the darkened sterile air. Savage

suggestions of artillery glory
echo as gunfire in his synapses,
swap reality for horror stories,
close in the gaps while contentment lapses

and terror creeps in. A pill, then a haze
slowly sedates his post-war dissension.
With tired eyes to Dionysius, glazed
amid a Thorazine intervention,

his overwrought psyche whispers in vain,
Make me a Seraph of six wings and flame.


I grew tired of picking your daisy petals,
chunks of steel and the avarice of
bitters with whiskey.
You asked for tenderness,
maybe mercy,
face down on the tile.
The next weekend
I took a sledgehammer
to the bathroom wall,
fixed the leaks
swept up porcelain
gained space in my bed.
I don't regret the mirror shards
that cut up my knees.
The monogrammed towels,
soaked in blood and abandonment,
say only "hers" now.

Amanda Wells teaches English at the University of Missouri—St. Louis while maintaining a gig in web communications. You can follow her rants, research, and daydreams via Twitter at @STLGrad. contact

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