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Page 220

220

2020

NORTH CAROLINA L I T E R A R Y RE V I E W

FINALIST, 2019 JAMES APPLEWHITE POETRY PRIZE BY AMY ELSIE PARKES

After the Acquittal I omitted many things. The deep rank smell that clung to my clothes after; the other smell under my skin after I did not deliver the letter I did not write to his house.

I burned everything –

Everything is my fault. Each clear thought swung like a fist. My bruises, my handprint smeared on the foggy mirror; he let me shower – blood and clots of hair still in the drain – before he took me home to navigate barefoot. Trying not to hurt myself on my shatters, on the sharp toothy mouths and the gossip. He did not say I want to see you again.

AMY ELSIE PARKES is a queer Nova Scotia poet. She holds a BA in English from Acadia University and an MFA in poetry from UNC Greensboro. She has published in Estuary, The Athenaeum, Cauldron Anthology, post ghost press and Barrelhouse Magazine, among others. Her first piece of creative nonfiction is in the journal, Studies in Canadian Literature.

Profile for East Carolina University

North Carolina Literary Review Online 2020  

A literary review published online annually by East Carolina University and by the North Carolina Literary and Historical Association.

North Carolina Literary Review Online 2020  

A literary review published online annually by East Carolina University and by the North Carolina Literary and Historical Association.

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