“What Can You Pen?” Second Place Poetry Prize

by Anna Chen

I am here with unwatered time
anxious leisure, pleasure meter
seizure of dreams in a green
bottle I got from the corner shop

Each day each dream
it seems the seams are ripping in my heart
in camouflage I played my part
and again I’m here
at delirium’s feet

Kissing through the window pane
it’s you and I— oh my insane
mind! How you’ve trapped me
now at half past adolescence
And here
in the crevices
of my memory
the machine gun’s laughing
the ratta-ta-ta
like hail
on the rain-proof
tin roof
where they serve
freeze-dried foods
to the pride of the nation
with silverware and artillery and
eternal damnation

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