“Woman in Womanhood” by Katherine Gaffney

“Woman in Womanhood” by Katherine Gaffney


Koi demands to be said
quietly as my yellow raincoat asks to be worn
on foggy days. The port is robed and disrobed
by the gusts whiter than the white laced
against the orange

on the fish’s back. Pairs swim
in a pond, with water tended to like arthritic
bones; they swim and love simply, rung
through with exoticism. Let us poeticize
womanhood. Pretend

a hoot is a howl; the sounds of a fife
equal the sexual exhales on a bed of sand. Widen
the bay’s mouth, let its voice sing a dirge
to passing ships unsure where to moor. Gnats rest
low over the bay

as though too heavy to fly–
a rug of wings. How coy they rest like mares
walking the fenceline with a raised tail, kicking
geldings when they come to her. She is viral,
she is ravenous, ravenous as a raven

atop a church dome, lonely
untouching tines, unless bent in misuse
and then abandoned. The woman in womanhood
wants to brocade her body so men eat the freckle
at her navel, the birthmark

on her ankle, but perhaps autumnal
gusts fell the fruits and the tone of her berried
gown will sour. The maze of her body undone,
she will be just another naked woman waiting
for a man to come.



Katherine is currently in the first year of her MFA at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. her work has previously appeared in Lullwater Review and Fairfield Review.

Category : Issue Seven December 2017 Tags :

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