Which medications are you currently taking?
a pinch of my husband’s envy
potent as cyanide 2 bricks of postpartum crushed
1 quart saltwater applied with eyedropper
wellbutrin stimulant I can almost hear
my heart twitch in its cage
What is your family’s medical history?
no nursery music bible library
long winters without sun
hearts that run like three-legged dogs
water’s not safe
to drink laced with lead leads to numb
How often do you exercise?
my feet tread moonlight
the noose is a night I step
into a screeching child to quiet my body
a pendulum from a corner of shadow
I watch it swing-swung sing a song
Do you have thoughts of self-harm?
shadow swallows coals
shadow’s lips sewn closed
shadow wells the dark
shadow ravens lark
shadow short of breath shadow beckons
Dayna Patterson is the author of Titania in Yellow (Porkbelly Press, 2019) and If Mother Braids a Waterfall (Signature Books, 2020). Her creative work has appeared recently in POETRY, Ruminate, Sugar House Review, Thrush, and Tupelo Quarterly. She is a co-winner of the 2019 #DignityNotDetention Poetry Prize, and she has been a Sustainable Arts Fellow at Mineral School Artists Residency. She is the founding editor-in-chief of Psaltery & Lyre and a co-editor of Dove Song: Heavenly Mother in Mormon Poetry. daynapatterson.com.
Artwork: Natalia Drepina