Back to Issue Eleven.

WHEN WE WERE PREY TO NOTHING

BY ANGELA VORAS-HILLS
 

The doe hides her fawn in sedge
            and disappears in the corn.

Some days 
                        it’s clear enough for love
            to depend on the periphery.

I sit in a willow between the field
            and marsh, doubt the red currant 

and cattails, the farmer’s
                        rusted pickup and morgue 
            of tires.  All of it a milkdream

of a baby hidden in a car seat 
            of a Corolla left in the parking lot

of Tan World, waiting  
                        for her mother... 
            I’d be lying if I said 

I didn’t want to build 
        a nest in these branches 

to hide you. 
                        But when we were prey to nothing, 
            we left fields and orchards untended—

they withered as we slept
            in full sun.  And so it is: 

you’ll grow into your skin
                         through the flesh of fruit 
            picked and eaten from every tree.



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Angela Voras-Hills earned her MFA at the University of Massachusetts – Boston, and was a fellow at the Writers’ Room of Boston. Her work has appeared in The Kenyon Review Online, Best New Poets 2013, Hayden's Ferry Review, and Linebreak, among others. She was recently awarded the Sustainable Arts Foundation's Spring Promise Award, and lives with her husband and two kids in Madison, WI.