Girlhood and Machines | Marie Elia

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 Marie Elia received her MFA in poetry from Columbia University. She is the archivist for the Poetry Collection at the University at Buffalo. 



Charlotte Among the Beasts


Pinned against watered wallpaper

they stare: arms open, tacked

figures from girlhood. Charlotte,


don’t move them, they're in order

and it took me ages. But I can draw you

a map if you want to go to the place where wrens ripen.

I planted all my dolls but forgot to water them.


On Tuesdays they feed us butter;

on Wednesdays I choose our prey

from the walls, chewing all day,

sucking wax from pulp.


I like to wake with the light.

I like when you're here, when I open my eyes

and you're looking at me like a mirror.

But it's never going to work if you don't share.