Ghost Pipes

Each stem bears only one flower

Monotropa = Greek for one turn


Over 2,000 Instagram posts to

Monotropa Uniflora—

skeletal, turning their necks down


or away


from terror

There’s just the going through—the holocaust

survivor says—discovered broken-backed

but alive among corpses—once

a dancer—


A night of dreams, the word

elocutions repeated


I walk behind you into Smithgall

Woods/ among mountain laurel

cupped blooms flushing

not our skins

but the skin of our skins


a voice in the dream

interrogatory: whom

did it change outside

the sphere of influence?


It being the woods?

It being how we came here?

It being the risks we took?


Not fungus, not reliant on sun, not with color

nor love for it,

not undulant, nor weak


interior, reliant

on nearby mushrooms

and trees –


Forced to dance for her bread

she shared it with the other rubbed-

away girls—eyes moons of



It =  all that we’ve used up

housed & bending corpse

heads to the ground


each mouths sensation sent

through nerve-like filaments

a radical mutualism


To stop was to be shot

on the Death March

Mauthausen to Gunskirchen

35 miles—



her spine broke—

the girls carried her


by November, you were gone


What disappears that we didn’t invoke


Amy Pence

Amy Pence is a full-time tutor in Atlanta where she’s taught poetry-writing at Emory University and in other workshop settings. Her books include Armor, Amour and [It] Incandescent from Ninebark Press, and the chapbook Your Posthumous Dress: Remnants from the Alexander McQueen Collection released by dancing girl press last winter. Find links to other work at