Blood of the Banana
For Troy, Brian, Alexandria, Arielle, Guadalupe, John, Nate and X
The flower pod hung
low and heavy,
a gorgeous appendage
two feet below
If left to nature,
it would ooze
its latex, clear at first,
then crimson ink, impossible
There was no need
for the shooter
to do what he did.
Afternoon Walk, Bone Island
And there were blushed mangoes
ripe on the branches
when the egg fell from the sky,
and as it hit the pavement it cracked
to something even more beautiful,
a honeyed sun
pillowed among billowy clouds.
It was there I saw myself, finally opened—
a blood egg, yes,
but still recognizable.
I hoped for a bone,
would have settled for ambiguity.
Never dared the definitive dream
in either direction. But here
it is— my devastation.
Her back turned, Hope walks away.
Jane Doe, Bottom of the Ninth
Where did you lose it? A ridiculous question most of the time— but not always. Today, I lost, or rather, left, my memory on the northbound Red Line between the pages of Anna Karenina right before she meets her death under the wheels of, ironically, a train. Funny how I can remember those details, but not my name, my address, whether I am married, a mother? No trauma. Just carelessness. I was headed to Wrigley to catch the Cubs, reading my way through romance and angst, and simply set the book down on the seat beside me. Lost in thought. Now, just lost. Alone in a sea of red, white and blue. Are these my people? We dress alike. I wonder where home is? After the game, I’ll take the Red Line south, see what happens.
Sequined Dress, Never Worn
The sequined dress is a rainbow in the dark, a sunrise in the closet, a lit fish sparkling
against the spray, its tag dangling from the neck like a hook from the mouth. The dress is a mirror of stars, confetti suspended mid-toss in parade, a set of magic markers splayed on the table, waiting for hands to hold, to color outside the lines. The dress is hope on a hanger, a thirsty river, a yellow brick road strewn with red poppies, a blue moon, a green-eyed cat, a white-hot wire sizzling with quick current. Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. The sequined dress is jazz on mute, a legless marching band, an ache for the repairman who fixes my AC. The god-damned dress is a life, a yearning to escape the dim corner where it lives, where it doesn’t, where it waits, where it rides the elevator with doors that don’t open, not even when I press the panic button.
Ann Weil writes at her home on the corner of Stratford and Avon in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and on a deck boat at Snipe’s Point Sandbar off Key West, Florida. Her work has been nominated for Best of the Net and appears in DMQ Review, Crab Creek Review, 3Elements Review, Whale Road Review, and elsewhere. Her first chapbook, Lifecycle of a Beautiful Woman, was published in April, 2023 by Yellow Arrow Publishing.