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Quitters

Everything has a cost.
This Arizona Iced Tea:
ninety-nine cents.
Dark clouds clump
around stars like cellulite.
The sidewalk stinks
sickly sweet of rotting petals.
An old lover’s tobacco breath
won’t call me. I am a pillar of raw
meat everybody’s squeamish
to touch. That’s a lie.
I could surely lure a hand if
I went bar-flying in that dress
I wore to the grocery store,
the one that made the car
of teenagers shout: show us
your tits!
It’s easier to be a body
when I’m not watching. A boy
I barely know says he got sober
by masturbating constantly
and binging horror films
while I watch him smoke
outside a church. It’s ugly
how much I want him
to pin me against the wall
and run his hand up my skirt,
remind me what it’s like to be
greedy, a glass three fingers full.
 
 
 

Stevie Edwards is the founder and editor-in-chief of Muzzle Magazine and senior editor in book development at YesYes Books. Her first book, Good Grief (Write Bloody, 2012), received the Independent Publisher Book Awards Bronze in Poetry and the Devil’s Kitchen Reading Award from Southern Illinois University, Carbondale. Her second book, Humanly, was released in 2015 by Small Doggies Press, and her chapbook, Sadness Workshop, is forthcoming from Button Poetry in January 2018. She has an M.F.A. in poetry from Cornell University and is a Ph.D. candidate in creative writing at University of North Texas. Her poetry is published and forthcoming in Indiana Review, Crazyhorse, TriQuarterly, Redivider, 32 Poems, The Journal, Rattle, Verse Daily, Pleiades, Ninth Letter, and elsewhere.