McKenzie Lynn Tozan




When I was young, I gazed at a tree
and knew if I didn’t start climbing,

I’d never get another chance. My smaller body,
a red and black dress, white tights 

that snagged on the branches. By the time
the adults took notice, my feet

were above their heads, the reaching
fingers, a woman slipping through

a pinhole—tomorrow when she wakes up,
the world is gone. Something will be missing.



In one of my dreams, a high school teacher
approaches me and says, here, write this down,

write this down, only so much wind can
arrive through a pinhole. A pause, and I say, right,

only so many birds can survive
in a young girl’s Sunday dress.

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