Two poems by Marisa Silva-Dunbar

My friend says I am going through a rough patch,

when I tell her my uncle is dying of brain cancer.
End of conversation. Dismissed. Do not seek comfort here.

She has known misery, but there are no offerings
of solace. No marigolds nor waffles for this altar—
She will not hear me. She won’t see me.

The weight of my grief may be a sculpture of stones,
Wanda Maximoff brought to her knees after the loss
of her twin brother; a scream that levels ancient cathedrals.


It’s a glitch—the flashes of a memory
—a thing I want to forget so I can be
whole alone.

Lying next to you in the amber light
of a summer sunset—you think of another.


I don’t know. I’ll see if I can get away.

I act blind to the insult hanging in the air—
Pretend I don’t feel as insignificant
as a crumpled marigold petal.

Add it to the list of things I don’t notice;
put it with glassy secrets
in the cabinet above the dryer.

This is no elixir of eternal sunshine to swallow,
only Veritaserum—I have let myself become
as inappreciable as Alice among the flowers.

Marisa Silva-Dunbar’s work has been published in Pink Plastic House, Sledgehammer Lit, Analogies & Allegories Literary Magazine, and Dear Reader. She has work forthcoming in ArLiJo, and The Bitchin’ Kitsch. Her second chapbook, “When Goddesses Wake,” was released in December, 2021 from Maverick Duck Press. You can find her on Twitter and Instagram @thesweetmaris.


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