Stomata [Kin Kelli 2] – A Poem by Katy Santiff

Night – Edvard Munch

Poetry by Katy Santiff

The rooms were stacked cells, stomata. Their doors
opened and closed. We’d come and go, transplants,
grieving. I noted when we were leaving
that we were four drops in this transient
sea, sleepless like a dark water, unclean
by the tragedy, and all the city’s
flooding footsteps fell in sync. Silent, we
bobbed along, buoyed in black and off-beat.
An attempt at humor when I tripped, a
haloed remembrance of her, this breathless
try at penance. Would it be that they knew
me, or mom, or Lori, or Colleen by
our quiet pose, sitting there like bastions
for a prosecutorial soul, their wish
to make it clear that yes, this may be Clark
County, but we don’t bludgeon women here.
We could only be stoics, statues in
the jury’s relief. I imagined vengeance
rumbling the benches from their bolts in
the floor, splitting hinges off the door. When
medical examiners testified
and her body was Picassoed on their
slides, I found a reason to be in this
town. Told the girls: don’t look, look up, look down.

About the Poet

Katy Santiff has written poetry in various forms all her life. A fan of meter and rhyme, she loves lines that hypnotize the reader with their sound. She believes in densely-packed poems, preferring them to be mouthfuls when read aloud. A lifelong Marylander, she loves water-side living.  She currently lives in Edgewater, Maryland with her wife.

For the first time in nearly five years, Vita Brevis is closed for submission. Read the full story here.

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