November 2017

M. Stone

Autonomy

the rocking horse swing breaks loose
from its hinges and sends you tumbling
into the biting kiss of an oak root

crimson tinges your front tooth
still a baby tooth and like a baby you cry
onto the sand where antlions burrow
waiting for their prey in funnel pits

your blood is bitter as not-quite-ripe
blackberries on the summer vine

you begin screaming as they usher
you inside past walls displaying
pictures of a house long burned down

and through the doorway crowned
by a gun rack to the bathroom where
they pat your hair and clean you up

“you’re gonna lose that tooth anyhow”

a year later when another takes its place
the enamel bears a milk-white sphere
kids at school make fun of and the dentist
itches to fix but you cup a hand

over your mouth to hide the defect
and tell him “no I won’t let you it’s mine”


M. Stone is a bookworm, birdwatcher, and stargazer who writes poetry while living in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in San Pedro River Review, SOFTBLOWCalamus Journal, and numerous other print and online journals. She can be reached at writermstone.wordpress.com

Emily Corwin