Content Warning: themes of death, violence and drugs
Jonathan Roman – The Ghetto
It roves; hungry, feathered, & scaled, changing shape as it pleases. A bullet through a window. A blade at your throat. Patient as a saint, it fattens you up with dreams & scraps of hope. It lets you out of your cage—gifts you years & the velvet of safety. But it is never far. It reminds you of your flesh.
empty crack vials
a fallen hatchling
covered in ants
Jonathan Roman was born and raised in the Bronx, New York, and writes poetry & fiction. His forays into japanese short form poetry can be found in jar of rain: The Red Moon Anthology of English Language Haiku 2020, After Amen: A Memoir In Two Voices, and Deeper Into Winter. Find him on Twitter: @deft_notes
Photograph: Fragility by Raegen Pietrucha
Raegen Pietrucha writes, edits, and consults creatively and professionally. Her chapbook, An Animal I Can't Name, won the 2015 Two of Cups Press competition; her debut poetry collection, Head of a Gorgon, is forthcoming with Vegetarian Alcoholic Press in May; and she has a memoir in progress. She received her MFA from Bowling Green State University, where she was an assistant editor for Mid-American Review. Her work has been published in Cimarron Review, Puerto del Sol, and other journals. Connect with her at raegenmp.wordpress.com and on Twitter @freeradicalrp.