ON BELONGING By Anna Šverclová


Part 1

How I loathe phone calls:
“S-as-in-Sam, V-as-in-Victor.”

The drought of the vowel a name hinged on an “er” a name of consonants
so quiet, in a world where vowels are louder a soft and choking L
a carrot above the Š, sings “shhh” Sometimes, I spell my own name wrong too
At the NHS induction ceremony, I, the speaker, was introduced “cervical”

Did I tell you? My father’s mail comes in under “Fzerko?”
the 800-number could not pronounce a name so quiet
instead, gifted him four new letters.

Part 2

I am “Anna Grace” after my grandmother and God,

how graceful the palindrome of the virgin’s mother, Anna, the paradox
of a Gen-Z camwhore.

Last month, I made $250 on OnlyFans.
I’ve got dick in my DM’s asking for $50 ratings And cum soaked panties in bubble mailers
And latex skirts and thigh high fishnet socks.

I changed my surname this year. I am now Anna Šverclová.

The Ová from “ovum,”
In Czech, meaning “belonging to a man”

Ironic, is it? that I should choose belonging in a line of the un-belonged

Did you know? After the fall of the USSR,
Newfound capitalism made czech women its products. Have you seen the videos?
a glory hole, a disembodied vulva, a mouth, a camera behind the wall.
Have you seen the gnarled smile in a 200 Koruna? A Catholic,
a bearded man allowed his face?

A currency to remind
that whatever is owned is also owned by him. A body, A pornstar, A Mail-order bride
In the hands of a catholic, with his hands on the bible, cleansing the devil in her loins

Tell me how sorry, tell me you’ll save me Tell me, knuckle deep in my pussy,
That there’s other ways to find money I am Anna Šverclová.
The Ová from “ovum,”
In Czech, meaning, “belonging”

The truth is, I am least owned
when I live in your boyfriend’s phone.

My boss is my self, my product is renewable.

Make it pre- or post- traditional.
Make it a reclamation, make it an ovum
inside out, a quarter tied to a line down a vending machine.

By Anna Šverclová


Anna Šverclová (they/them) is a totally queer sophomore director of Macalester College’s slam poetry team, MacSlams. They were born and raised in the Twin Cities suburbs and they cry whenever it snows. Over the years, they have become an expert in layering. Their secret? A journal compliments every outfit.

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