Beth Woodcome Platow

Sick Day

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When I called out from work I said it was because _________ was sick.
She wasn’t sick but she died in my dream the night before.
In a dream no one records the time of death. No one prepares.
No one goes to bed thinking: When I wake up I’ll be ruined.
I’ll know what it’s like to lose a
_________. But who can know what this is like.
Can those who live it know, and can we call that living?
When I woke up, I couldn’t.

I lay in bed with _________ all morning, attentive in a way I’m usually not.
Even her hair was alive. Her heart was moving like a soft machine.
She had no knowledge of her own passing. I kept my face
to the side of her face. If you go, I’m coming with you.

Somehow the day had a place to be, but I couldn’t move or let ________ move.
If it happened once, like the longest length of any night, like a hand grabbing
the contents of that night, it could happen again. If time happens,
if harvest happens, if even once a soldier died. If some one,
then every one. I can’t even name her. I’m scared I said she was sick.


ART: Paul Ferragut, Leo Katunaric, Stefanie Schneider

FICTION: Bridget Apfeld, Jennifer A. Howard, Laura Schadler

NONFICTION: Joy Katz, Shena McAuliffe, Kate Partridge, Rob Schlegel

POETRY: Dan Beachy-Quick, Carrie Fountain, Jules Gibbs, Alen Hamza, H. L. Hix, Anna Maria Hong, Krzysztof Jaworski, Thomas Kane, Eric Kocher, Jennifer MacKenzie, Andrew Nance, Paul Otremba, Kate Partridge, Beth Woodcome Platow, Catie Rosemurgy, Claire Sylvester Smith, Lesley Yalen

ET CETERA: Glenn Shaheen’s
“POET The Game”

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