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When I was young I was not chic

but I had the calling to be chic,

the memo in my marrow:

“Someday, smile.” A young girl

lives the opening credits of Barbarella

on eternal loop, is made of the way

her name spills out of her hair.

When all else fails—and it will—

put your fingers in your mouth.


See the afterlife for what it is:

rebel episodes pre-paralyzed

for maximum release.

Outside, a girl with nobody

says to the night, “All right, let’s go.”

In movies a man always appears

and says, I will hurt you

by being the way that I am,

but follow me everywhere

anyway. If the Devil

wants you, he will show.


At thirty, I keep dreaming of horses.

You always look away while

I leave. If I had loved you more,

you would know the difference.

The situation remains nameless.

Sometimes you get a shipwreck,

but nothing next – no tall tales,

no scavengers, no skeleton grove.

I just came in to get warm.

Meg Hurtado Bloom is a poet, copywriter, and editor from San Francisco. She loves Russian novels, hotel bars, and every album Blondie ever made. She earned her MFA from St Mary’s College of California. Her writing has appeared in Split Lip, Lumen MagazineThe VoltaHidden City Quarterly, West Wind ReviewPOOL, among others. Her poems "Sun Medicine" and "Ghost Medicine" were recently listed as finalists in the latest Tinderbox Poetry Journal contest.

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