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Sarah Lilius

I Feel Stupid and Contagious

My mind on a loop,

            stick my head in the leeching


past of the four ring circus

            of Rock Island High School.


Distracted boys with knives,

            girls stroke boys’ short black beards


with longing, hymens line up

            like nooses.


Cafeteria daze, I should have

            pills across my heart, rolling


in my blood like pigs, cut in half,

            there’s never enough bacon for boys


with condoms in loose

            pockets. French fry pimples


keep boys from getting

            laid in father’s minivans,


blue Hondas full of crumbs,

            fast food wrappers.


Musical trauma, we rock solid

            in the air, my gold Chevy,


rolling tease wagon,

            I line up boys in flannel,


girl firing squad, self control

            reeks of attitude and mint gum,


my Friday night fire

            kills when I drop


them off at spring curbs,

            grass newly green as us.


*Title taken from Nirvana’s Smells Like Teen Spirit

Sarah Lilius is the author of four chapbooks, most recently, Thirsty Bones (Blood Pudding Press, 2017) and GIRL (dancing girl press, 2017). Some places her work can be found are Luna Luna Magazine, Tinderbox, Flapperhouse, and Stirring. She lives in Northern Virginia and her website is sarahlilius.com

JD Thornton