ISSUE TWENTY THREE: Let Yrs Slay Me | next poem →

Uninvited Images Arriving to the Lightless Shale of Sleep

Jenifer Metsker and Kendall Babl


May you enter unintelligently into
an antecedent and forget your name.
Tall grass gone to seed. Small mammals
at play. An air raid siren far away.
High in the vaulted pattern
the clatter of bone spoon on
incisors. Vitrine ladel, robust
offerings, deep in the beef body,
almost home.


Someone enters the room
with a knives for hands. Mezzanine kitchen,
multi-track conversation. Sharp speech.
Ancient snail shells in the shadows,
you lift them up to your ear. It’s like
stumbling into the middle of a sentence
that doesn’t end. Architectural delay,
thin walls, voices electrocuted.
Morning comes, sallow light,
an opening, dead to the sun.


Your dream: a house with falling ceilings.
Your dream: a house wherein only
failure, relentless, unmitigated, is
the tradition of your trying.
Large plaster-y primitive cakes
in the fullness of their moisture.
Here you will relearn your cadence.
Here you will learn to come undone.

Jenifer Metsker 's poetry has been published in Beloit, Birdfeast, Cream City Review, Gulf Coast, The Southern Review, The Seattle Review, Rhino, and many other journals. Her audio poetry has been featured regularly on the BBC Radio program Short Cuts.

Kendall Babl is a sculptor, musician, arborist, and writer who has exhibited work internationally. He has been published in Kipseli and Sound Sculpture, and is the founder of the art agency BU-CON which can be found at

ISSUE TWENTY THREE: Let Yrs Slay Me | next poem →


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   Second Blooming

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      I threw a rock at a crab
      and accidentally killed it

Jennifer Metsker & Kendall Babl
   Uninvited Images Arriving
      to the Lightless Shale of Sleep

Heikki Huotari
   Unfinished Sympathy

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