Note from the Editors

 

   SEEING RED 

    ENDU(RED) ADMI(RED)
    DESI(RED) WONDE(RED)
    RUMO(RED) ADO(RED)
    ENAMO(RED) INSPI(RED)
    DISCOVE(RED) SAC(RED)
    HUNGE(RED) WONDE(RED)
    EXPLO(RED) FEATU(RED)
    AUTHO(RED) SEA(RED)
    DA(RED) UNCENSO(RED)
    SOA(RED) ADVENTU(RED)

 

 

    


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Empire

malus domestica

 

I axed you in a dream and awoke
to my heart wild, thudding.
My will to destroy left me shaken.

Strengthen your core, the instructor said.
If something opens up inside of you,
let it go. Common ground. Garden
commons. Wife in common.

You were putting out roots, leafing at the base.
(Cut back all waterspouts, suckers.)
My will cowered behind doors at sunset, jacket slack on a hook.
It wouldn’t block any sun.

Once volunteers grew in every bed.
I had to weed, right?
I plucked McIntosh, Macfree, Spartan,
green flags of first leaves, green flags of hope.

I needed a pruner wide enough
it could lop the crown from trunk
and a shovel sharp enough to expose the nest of roots.

That’s what she told me, the instructor,
move from your center.
Our arms swung an imaginary axe—

that garden was ours.


Laura Madeline Wiseman is the author of Queen of the Platform (Anaphora Literary Press, 2013), Sprung (San Francisco Bay Press, 2012), and the collaborative book Intimates and Fools (Les Femmes Folles Books, 2014) with artist Sally Deskins, as well as two letterpress books, and eight chapbooks, including Spindrift (Dancing Girl Press, 2014). She is the editor of Women Write Resistance: Poets Resist Gender Violence (Hyacinth Girl Press, 2013). Her book, American Galactic, is forthcoming from Martin Lit Books. Wiseman has a doctorate from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. She has received an Academy of American Poets Award, the Wurlitzer Foundation Fellowship, and her work has appeared in Prairie Schooner, Mid-American Review, Margie, and Feminist Studies. Currently, she is a writer-in-residence at the Prairie Center of the Arts in Illinois. www.lauramadelinewiseman.com


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