by Emma Taylor
I squeeze olives on my thumbs,
as my throat begins to numb.
I’ll leave this town behind one day.
The fridge is hollowed out,
while my wallet’s plagued with drought.
My lease expires at the dawn of May.
My eyes are swollen shut,
worms inhabiting my gut,
the TV’s talking nonsense tonight.
My thoughts begin to fade,
the world slinks into shade,
my body’s giving up on the fight.
But as the gloom begins to wake,
new ideas stretch and shake,
my mind unfolds, new in the sun.
And as the worms begin to shrivel up,
my throat is breaking free.
My ashes sprinkled from a cup,
beneath an olive tree.
Emma Taylor is a masters student in Literature and Composition at San Francisco State University. They graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara with an undergraduate degree in English and worked as an editor at the school's literary arts magazine, The Catalyst. Emma is a pasta fanatic, lover of all cats, and a huge Talking Heads fan. Their work has previously been published in The Catalyst, Um... Magazine, Rattle Young Poets Anthology, and KCSB's 2021 annual zine.