To have survived a life of gentle skirt-lifting is to never experience overexposure.

To retain a place in this world is to burnish split cherries until the red glosses with spit.

To people who gender the unborn what about the lotus is tagged with murder or crisp bows.

To engineer a clear sky some nations swallow clouds and suffer spiked rain.

To be tongued a floor has to retain its modesty beneath serrated lines.

To unease into a spread always keep the kneecaps ready for a feast at a moment’s notice.

To collect hate colonialize first a chorus of white-bellied weeping.

To colonialize is to imbue tenderness into that which has been extirpated by force.

To force enlargement onto the relation between girlhood & fortune

a whole generation must lose.


GRACE SHUYI LIEW is from Malaysia. Her work has won fourth place in Blue Mesa Review's poetry contest, as well as appeared in journals such as Winter Tangerine Review, PANK, and The Dirty Napkin. She writes and teaches in Flagstaff, Arizona, where she also reads for Waxwing.

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