Katherine Fallon‘s poems have appeared in Juked, Apple Valley Review, Colorado Review, Meridian, Foundry, and others, and her work will be featured in Best New Poets 2019. Her chapbook, The Toothmakers’ Daughters, is available through Finishing Line Press. She teaches at Georgia Southern University, and shares domestic square footage with two cats and her favorite human, who helps her zip her dresses.
That summer we drove straight across I-40, chain-smoking, fearing brush fires, snuffing Marlboros out in water bottles. When she told me about the Wolfman, we were in the flat, night-hot stretches of Texas, maybe, or Arizona. Miles and miles between exits and the stars were so bright they were green. She said he runs along beside your car, whatever the speed. Human legs inhuman, with the head of a beast, he turns his face to you and his eyes are white as the newly-dead. The horizon a shadow of difference, a divider between here and unknown elsewheres. Windows down just enough to make the world a sighing seashell, I couldn’t listen for his bare feet, but I dreamed of him night after night in roadside motels. That summer, everything seemed to rip open and tumble from me, toward me, and I saw him, I swear it. He was with us. Made us magic, made us three.
Although your legs were heavy
on me and the fat black fly
bounced from window to wall
while we slept, I did, in fact, dream.
Your ringed irises were glistening
cabochons. And the fly went still,
for once, its meddling hands folded
tight for wish, for appetite.