Endless discover me grueling like learning the stars by feel. Dirigible spheres. A storied audit down to the aether. The thing to do is gaze to the lode of me—supposing ore—then, starved for frame, the reaches of us. Beyond the water cycle, I fog the peeks of foil. I’m not angry. Still they hold heat, they bright, they torn lacunose in a wholecloth umbra. Don’t say time, say blinks don’t say blessed, say lucky. The negative space always appears so soft.
That’s her. Can’t recall blank no-smile no-yell no-body and not a soul watching. Before endless Xanadu reflections, diffuse in a stubborn pantry. So can it be she is also everything that has found a home in the glossy surface of her. Because then what is motility. Then what then what notion’s solid. In perpetuity: there’s a girl that is [redacted], a longer-than-possible sentence that’s the girl, a cold slice of hungry that’s the sentence, a soft-serve dish that’s the hunger, a joke that’s the soft-serve, a tantrum that’s the joke which is a star with nowhere else to look and a planet that has no light of its own saying That’s her.
A Cajun Louisiana native, SAMANTHA BARES is a graduate of the Helen Zell Writers’ Program, where she won the Frederick Busch Prize in Fiction, and a former Zell Postgraduate Fellow. Her poetry has most recently appeared in Epigraph Magazine. Her fiction, published under the name Mant Bares, is forthcoming in the Beloit Fiction Journal. Samantha is working on a novel-length swamp opera, which Key West Literary Seminar selected as finalist for the 2020 Marianne Russo Emerging Writer Award.