SELF PORTRAIT By Rebecca Kokitus


a ghost in the kitchen window mistaken for me

born with miner’s black fingers, witch’s green thumb / born from the swamps like Venus from the sea / with bog scum beneath your fingernails

grew up playing dress-up / with cheap eyeshadow and the stubborn dirt of the land

mostly scar tissue / mostly ingrown past selves

show me the origin of tragedy / the home like a freezer where you leave your heart / when you run to the city / where mother props it up on the pillows / with your stuffed animals and unopened mail

show me the moment you first confused disease for art / forever sallow as a smoker’s wallpaper / because you just wanted to be more than wallpaper

dyed red hair hangs down your back like a fake flame / made of cloth and light and air / that they can touch and feel like god

sometimes I want to drive until the fields unfold / like a patchwork quilt on my childhood bed /and I can burrow inside and become you again / sometimes your coal ash aura catches the light like dust / and I want to beat it out of you / like an old rug

By Rebecca Kokitus


Rebecca Kokitus is a part time resident of Media, PA just outside Philadelphia, and a part time resident of a small town in rural Schuylkill County, PA. She is an aspiring poet and is currently an undergraduate in the writing program at West Chester University of Pennsylvania. More of her writing can be found in Rag Queen Periodical and Moonchild Magazine, among other places. She tweets at @rxbxcca_anna.

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