“How Often We Confuse Ovens For Rabbit Holes” – Poetry by Kailey Tedesco

Rabbit in Front of the Mirror - Michael Sowa
Rabbit in Front of the Mirror – Michael Sowa

Sensual, Proustian memories meet everyday magic in “How Often We Confuse Ovens for Rabbit Holes,” Kailey Tedesco‘s wonderfully surreal poem from our Summer 2016 issue.

{ X }

IN GROCERY STORES, I HATE THE SMELL OF RAW
roses by the dozen. Suddenly, I’m seven

and you’re pulling me out of school, or I’m
fourteen and the mortician hands me a tissue

that I hold, unblown, like my friend, light-
as-a-feather-stiff-as-a-board. What I’m getting

at is I’m sick of sitting in pews doused with
grocery store petals — they affront and I’m sucked

into a whirlwind of pollen. It’s disturbing how
stamen can make such associations, but I can’t

get the local magician out of my head. He pulled
a carnation from his lopsided top hat, elastic strung

haphazardly around his unshaven mug. As he extends
the flower, his face too close to mine, I wonder if he

wears the top hat all of the time– even while eating
beer-dipped sardines poolside? Did I ever tell you

I used to play in the carcasses of whales? They were
washed up all over the tree-line, and I, in my

communion socks, counted the paces from mouth
to tail until the whales became too stuffed with

fungus or the magician pulled up in his rose
gold Hyundai to ask me if I need a ride. A good

witch won’t offer you chewing gum, and I’m not
crawling in, but I am fattening up. And we can

spend our whole lives shouting Bloody Mary
into mirrors, hoping she’ll pop by and bring

us through the other side, but chrome is as murky
as any above-ground pool. All my life, I’ve been

chasing the vermin home, only to wake up
exactly where I started.

{ X }

Kaileybio.picKAILEY TEDESCO wholeheartedly believes in both ghosts and mermaids. She received her MFA in creative writing from Arcadia University, and has written for rad places like Ultraculture and Luna Luna Magazine. She is a recent Pushcart Prize nominee and the editor-in-chief of Rag Queen Periodical. You can find some of her poetry in Menacing Hedge, Crack the Spine, Rust + Moth, and more. For more information and pictures of a psychic cat visit kaileytedesco.com.

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