“Persephone” by Emma J. Gibbon

“Persephone” by Emma J. Gibbon

She can’t remember the last time she left the apartment

Smoke curls the wallpaper
and the dead rise from black trash bags
Her hands
     held out in front of her
          are wrong
She wanted her mother’s hands
     Here they are in shadow wringing over the dirty carpet

His cigarettes on the kitchen counter
He wouldn’t notice if she took one
Slide one out with slender fingers
flick the lighter
     kiss of gray hissing out towards the glowing curtains

Is the door even locked?

If she could just get a slice of sunlight
     a sliver of fruit in her throat
          everything would be all right
     until summer.

Emma J. Gibbon is a Rhysling-nominated poet and horror author. Her poetry has appeared in Strange Horizons, Eye to the Telescope, Liminality and Pedestal Magazine, and her short fiction is collected in Dark Blood Comes from the Feet. Emma lives with her husband, Steve, and three exceptional animals: Odin, Mothra, and Grim. Her website is emmajgibbon.com.