Three Poems by Renn Elkins


draw him up in fish netting,
bruise his bloated skin.
silence the green.

wrap him in the reeds of his glasswater bay
dredged through thick sand,
sopping rot and muck and rodent bones,
eaten from the inside out.

magnify him.
lick the fissures of his cell membranes.
twist his sclera,
bend back his eyelids,
pry out each perfect tooth,
hollow him.
dampen his ashes.

sew him up with pink sleek silk.
(it was her favorite color.)

make him taxidermy,
give him verdant eyes.
no one needs to know.



she is soft on the horizon,
cream and rose and tangerine.
call her princess.
blind yourself to the blue;
she weeps heavy behind
her generous stain.

she is flushed with fool’s gold,
three of her teeth are steel and
twenty-seven are papier-mache.

he licked her sugar-spun lashes
to nothing.

paint yourself pearly
beautiful little fool;
your love is false white sand in the chlorine sea.


the green light

his melting skin tangled
in her cotton bones,

they could be lime like false fire
again and again and again
under the linen rain.

she polished him
his forehead gleaming oak
his jawbone buttered cedar.

he infused her
until titanium burst through her cheeks
split her skin like tissue.

their sun is so small, cold as truth
yet they are colorless candlewax,
erased in the tides of twin shores.

even icarus would blush
to know their plight.





Renn Elkins is a student attending Mount Holyoke College in Massachusetts, originally from Minneapolis, with the intention of majoring in English with a Creative Writing track.