Three of Swords

By Sidney Ulakovic



Superior Outdoors


As a girl I watched my mother fire / all the plates she owned off the balcony She was never the type / to write balloon letters and tie / a ribbon around all her nothing before she watched it disappear / shattered fragments / like a puzzle on the pavement Now I am a woman and nothing begs / to be broken like porcelain / a rite of passage I will teach my daughter / that when her breath boils over the night / and blurs any distinction that when she wants to destroy / everything and that everything will too / often be herself that broken glass is like soaking / your kitchen in bleach until everything feels / like a swimming pool in July / in another lifetime where you wrapped yourself / in sun stained towels and thought about the freckles on your face / as the season slipped away / That she will never cease to be terrified by time’s indifference / as leaves litter the sidewalks like ashes or broken plates that will disintegrate / into the concrete like sand / where she can always find another evening to hunt / for seashells as the tide goes out