—sculpture by Susanne Ussing (1980)


Mom said she dreamt of little girls

while I was just a guppy

nestled in the crook of her pelvis, curled

in on myself, shy from before I was

even a real thing, not

ready for the world to know

me yet. She never dreamed

I’d become this massive; ghost,

guttural scream at the foot of her bed,

depression nestled like a dead fish

in my gut. Always been too big

for my own selfishness. Woman in the glass

house grows to fill the space

she’s put in, is made of paper

and bones and spitfire. Born

to be contained, held

together with iron and glue. The artist

(her mother) adds another layer. She grows.

She is kneeling, always,

even in art she must be naked, crouched,

miniature, Lady Homunculus. Here,

in the glass jar, distilled air, thick

with vanilla, she becomes



Emily Zogbi is a poet from Long Island. She graduated from SUNY New Paltz with her BA in English. Her work has appeared in Gandy Dancer and Chronogram. Zogbi currently works as an editorial assistant at Oxford University Press. She wishes she had been a dancer.