It took time for us to realize it was a series.
The prints were deep, gelatin, and placed in different areas
of the house. We pulled on white cotton gloves.
Anna had photographed the southeast corner of the yard for years.
She nested a flat stone off the porch in her cordial grass
and had perched there, and shot: past the pale
bowl of the birdbath, the thin leg of swingset trestle.
The forging laurel kept the sun and the chewing deer scant.
An unnatural owl in an early shot, then nothing for a time, and then
the form appeared later, more sharply, and seemed to be leavening
from the wide leaves, rising toward the house. She wrote that
waxy cardinals kept their distance, seemed uninterested in her seed.
Two letters to her sister during this time mention concerns.
Sometimes I feel there’s something here, immediately, on the grounds,
moving the trees. Also, later, that same year: I saw it in the kitchen
eating spoons. But you know, she adds, I also think the stars
are made of cheese. It’s here she first mentions her mouth was changing.
She was having difficulty tasting acids and salt.
My tongue has gone numb, she concludes. Just like Mother dreamed!
She’d be happy to hear. Sarah, the child-thing usually enters through
cellars and rear doors, preferring cupboards and eaves and the gaps behind chairs.
Police blotters were florid, sickening blooms. When
Anna disappeared, cattle and ground birds made short sounds.
The grove chattered, sank. Her house stopped as under snow.
Linda Wojtowick grew up in Montana. She now lives in Portland, Oregon, where she can indulge her cinematic obsessions without restraint. She’s a two-time Pushcart Prize nominee, and her work has appeared in Noble/Gas Quarterly, Visitant, Occulum, The Slag Review, and upcoming in Wax Seal. She can be tracked down on twitter at @LindaWojtowick.”