Photo taken by the author.

OR: We Used To Watch the Sunrise Together

Even after you shattered my sorry
Soul, I could stare at the sunrise all day
Craving the squeeze of your hand around mine
Because while you wondered how it felt to
Love something so much that for a while,
You forget for a moment your failure to love
Yourself, I only saw something I wished
You could see too; it never occurred
To me I could want to reclaim the part
Of me clenched tightly in your other hand.

Now even the ghost of laughter is gone,
But here you are, painting my soul into
Endless gray skies awaiting the downpour
After an…

Photo by Evie S. on Unsplash

A poem about escape from the hated body.

For as long as I can remember,

the women of my family have lived

in hunger like hulking tigers in a cramped cage.

Love is quickly used up, its quality fading

from golden light into grainy shadows

flicked haphazardly across God’s great canvas.

After Love departs, nothing remains but

the splinters where we have torn away limbs

and dug holes in search of that light again,

the flecks of gold streaked through our hair,

the ones that know better than revisit our homes.

When we give up, we sit in our drab backyards

to watch the sun sink over a…

Photo by Sebastian Unrau on Unsplash

Published in Moonflake Press Issue 01 (Feb 2021)

Long nights I spent with forever at my feet

And the knocker at my fingertips

I couldn’t close the distance, I was scared

Of your door. I know you never want to see me again,

And I’m alright with that, I swear I am.

Sometimes when I think of you, I recall

Every second with you was me begging

For what you were never willing to give.

And I’m finished with it. So forget me,

Forget the promises I made to you,

I will not spend the rest of my life

Searching every pair of eyes in the room


Photo by Jiroe on Unsplash

I will love you in the pouring rain,

See you down streets glimmering,

See you as an adventurer set free.

I’m sorry I can’t bleed beautifully

Or paint you the prettiest pictures

Like all your other dreamy lovers do

For what it’s worth, I have unrivaled expertise

In the art of quieting worried hearts

So every moment can be savored,

Just one puzzle of piece of thousands

Like a heart as infinite as my hunger for knowledge of it

And I can learn to love anything at all-

I can be a miracle beyond words for you.

Photo by Andre Hunter on Unsplash

Passing by an old brick building on a slow road

I almost laugh to think the last time I was there,

I thought I’d found who I was supposed to be

When I barely knew how to do anything more

Than stay quiet and stay out of everyone’s way.

I told my old soul sisters I’d see them soon

But I haven’t seen those pieces of my heart in a while.

Photo by Haley Lawrence on Unsplash

TW: sexual assault

At the party you press me against the wall

Your tongue is an invader more than an inquirer in my mouth

My dress is too tight, my dress is too short

I don’t remember how I got here, I don’t even want to.

It’s been about a year of stolen glances

But I never thought you would go so far

Except that one time when maybe I thought-

But no, now I can’t think at all because you’re like a dragon

Shooting fire down my neck. Why can’t I breathe?

Photo by Adam Nieścioruk on Unsplash

Rosalie double-checked her reflection for the tenth time and reapplied her lipstick. She had a feeling the night to follow would be important for her and she wanted so badly to make it perfect. She’d even worn a skirt for the occasion, something she hadn’t done since the night she was desperately trying to forget about, not that she remembered it very clearly anyway. But she remembered enough to torture herself and she was really trying to get over that. Tonight was the perfect time to get over it- Will’s birthday party. His birthday was a Saturday, but he’d decided…

Photo by Amarnath Tade on Unsplash

I see you in dated Polaroid frames chasing after a new girl,

Younger than me and prettier than me, her eyes sparkle

And thanks to you, mine carry the weight of a soul’s death

Her smile screams I have nothing at all to be insecure about,

Not a worry plaguing my heart- you’ve yet to snatch from her

All the happiness, the hope, and whatever else you stole from me

A blink of an eye later, it’s like you never waltzed through my door

So right now I’m sitting all by myself just like I always wanted

But I still…

Photo by William Krause on Unsplash

With the grace of a queen

My mother lowers her creaking body

Into the same old wooden throne

At the same old kitchen table

Just a second later she sighs,

Breathes heartbreak the color of the ocean

But somehow it fades to gray

Invisible tears fall on unforgiving cement.

With a hand resting over her stomach

She hovers as always, the best of mother’s do

She breathes in the lilacs, violet, lavender

When promised herself the cancer wouldn’t win

She didn’t anticipate victory taking so much of her

This precious thing no longer a part of her

Out of use…

Brianna R Duffin

I write poetry, prose, and personal pieces. All images are mine unless indicated otherwise. Feel free to leave feedback on my work anytime; I hope you enjoy.

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