A poem by Karyna McGlynn

We’re happy to continue presenting work from our readers at the upcoming Augury Books & Friends offsite AWP reading/shindig in Seattle. The reading will be at Noble Neon, 3130 Airport Way S on Friday, February 28th from 7:30 until we all feel like going back to our hotels. If you’ll be in Seattle, please join us!

Photo by Dave Bledsoe of FreeVerse Photography

Shooting Script

I like to yank necklaces from women’s throats.

I am unconcerned

whether I break the clasps or the women.

A spray of pearls in the sunlight. No comment.

I smoke in the same sunlight.

Unconcerned in my underwear on an old floral chair.

My feet on the armrest. Look at me.

Little sensual snail.

Feet on the dashboard. The same sunlight.

I am a passenger in his Wagoneer

racing to a lakeside house where I will die.

In a Coeur d’Alene diner our waitress is pretty

with big breasts and black eyes.

She deserves better than this.

When she goes out by the dumpster to smoke

we kidnap her. Look at me, I say. Look.

The same sunlight on the lake house.

Grilled meat smell licking the side of the lake.

The three of us in a boat.

I am feeding the waitress slices of apple

off the side of my knife. She is wearing

my old green bikini. The boat cuts through

the no wake zone. Spray of water in the sunlight.

The droplets cling to her glasses. She doesn’t

wipe them away. She wants to tell me something.

Look, I say. We all have an imperfect past.

We swim out to the untethered raft.

He is showing off. He dives down under

the cool shadow, hides between rusted barrels.

He looks through the gray planks

into our green and cherry crotches. Sunlight.

He puts algae in his hair. He gurgles.

Look, I say. Monster. A thing goes ping, ping, ping.

His mouth. Her ear. Someone makes a wineglass sing.

I lick my thumb. I won’t stop it.

One time a body washed up in a greening slip.

It was waxen with cold and axed down

everyone’s Indian summer. True story.

You should come kiss me for telling it.

Originally published in Phoebe, Spring 2013

Karyna McGlynn is the author of I Have to Go Back to 1994 and Kill a Girl, winner of the Kathryn A. Morton Prize from Sarabande Books, as well as two chapbooks. Her poems have recently appeared in Ploughshares, The Literary Review, Seattle Review, West Branch, Subtropics, and The Academy of American Poet’s Poem-A-Day. Karyna received her MFA from the University of Michigan, and is currently a PhD candidate in Literature & Creative Writing at the University of Houston. She is the Managing Editor of Gulf Coast and coordinator for the Houston Indie Book Fest and Gulf Coast Reading Series.