Poor Claudia published poetry, prose and conversations online and in print from 2009 to 2018.

Megan Freshley

Three Poems

  • Still Life of a Mosh Pit
  • Big Sur Widow
  • Throwing Food Into Surprised People's Mouths

Still Life of a Mosh Pit

There has to be
some hormone released
when we’re pressed
together this way,
buffalo with dust-clumped hair,
bovine, indifferent. I like
your smell
because I can smell
you are also animal.

Someone picks me
up off the ground
by my clothes,
some unknown fist
full of my collar, the babe
in the jaws of its mother.
& a boy, mouth agape,
holds up a leopard-print shoe
as if to say: anyone?
and is gone again.

Turn around,
the stadium strobe lights
make us stop-motion
still lifes, everywhere
the sweat rorshach tests
on cotton chests, our
slick muscles gleaming
like waxed fruit.

The pièce de résistance being
a gangly US-flag shirt Zappa,
his bloody nose
streaming patriotically,
dust kicked up
in amorous war clouds
at the same moment
that I get elbowed in the kidney
so hard I cry out
like I saw a meteor!

Big Sur Widow

my oiled skin,
a fake silk
black slip,
the mountain lions yelling
out in the blackness.

The wind moves my hair
like a wedding dress.
The ice laughs
in my glass.

I have sex
with myself to see
who I belong to.

The vibrator
I throw it away
in the dumpster.

On my jasmine porch,
the black widow
in a mason jar,
the red hourglass
disappeared after death.

Throwing Food Into Surprised People's Mouths

Now I refresh my browser expecting the thing to be there. I look at Gmail, Tumblr again, just in case it’s there. My peers stand in the woods with well-placed tattoos, wearing Navajo blankets. They look toward me over their shoulders.To clear my head, I go for a walk down an old road in Romania on Google Earth. I get a normalizing gaze from a man in a nice overcoat. Didn’t it seem like he felt me, here in the future, as I passed him in the camera-mounted van, looking?Amazon sends me an email, saying I Want To Be The One To Hold You At Night While You Snore. The warm, polite body of my laptop regards me so openly in my Craigslist bed. Each coming-of-age teen series makes me cry, especially if there’s redemption: the character has fucked up so badly, so completely.

Then someone realizes, and when they say It’s Going To Be Okay, they hold the sides of the character’s face in their hands, and also say It’s Not Your Fault. And the character cries, and it’s not their fault. I refresh it again, now there’s an email from God, saying It’s Over, You Did Good. Now It Will All Fall Into Place And You Can Turn Off The Search Bar In Your Chest.

Megan Freshley

Megan Freshley is from Cincinnati, Ohio. She currently lives in Portland, Oregon, where she attends Portland State University's MFA program and works as executive editor at Portland Review.