Monday Inspiration


I wonder if sugar knows

As it drops into water,

With lemons,


Or tea

That it is changed, completely.

That being as it was

Is now drowning in heat.

I wonder if sugar

Feels and delights

That its dissolution-

Sweetens the sour,

Softens the bitter,

And cries what comes next?


Turtle dove walls,

White cotton curtains.

The room was supposed to feel light.


Outside the branches are bare.

The ground is frozen.

Rain is mixing with the hiss of the fireplace.

It’s January.

These rooms are for ghosts,

Silent footsteps over unsure boards.

Thoughts that trail into nowhere.

Full of fog and twitching covers.

I hung paintings on the walls.

And mirrors,

I watch myself cross them, back, forth, backward.

I begin to see my reflection as a memory of me,

All silver, and glass, and magic I can’t really touch.

It doesn’t really exist.

Moth bitten.

My home feels like a morgue.


I guess the first time was

Right when I woke up.

I still felt tired, and I knew,

If I wasn’t always so sad

I’d have more energy.

And then when I was frying an egg,

After being a failure as a mother.

I fished my fingers into the pepper

For flakes of chili ashes,

And as it spilled onto the stove,

I thought of how this didn’t happen

To better women.

I reheated the coffee from yesterday,

Left in its pot

To drink this morning, instead

Of fresh grounds, and water, and time.

A smarter woman would treat herself better.

Did I use too much cream cheese?

Why did I grab the bagel still hot, and burn my fingers?

Why am I so sad?

And I think of every terrible thing,

Ever said to me, by people I made angry.

The words slam into the inside of my head that I am:

Never enough,

That I

Could be, should be- more.

I was meant to be the love of their lives.

They loved me so much

Except I am not good enough, so they had to stop.

They tell me, I am to blame for this unfortunate truth.

And as I sit down, I’m always sitting down, too much,

I should change

I remember I left the laundry


Emalee Long is a linguistic anthropologist and writer living and working in Little Rock,
Arkansas. Her poetry, nonfiction, and micro fiction can be found online at Columbia University
Journal, Panoply Zine, The Showbear Family Circus, 86 Logic, The Pointed Circle, and The
Whorticulturalist. Find her in print at Weasel Press Vol. 3, In Parentheses Vol. 6 issue 2, 86 Logic
Vol. 1, and Wingless Dreamer ‘Rewritten.’

Follow Emalee on Instagram

Coffee tip:

Not all coffee is created equal. When shopping for coffee to brew at home, think about who is handling the coffee. Are the laborers paid, are the beans organic? Instead of reaching for the cheapest beans, look into the company that produces the product. You may be surprised to learn how far your coffee has traveled before it is in your cup. Cheap beans often equal poor quality and bad labor practices. Also, they don’t have the same taste.

By being a more educated consumer, you will support fair labor and environmental practices.

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