“Life Dinner” & “Moon Poem” by Courtney Cook

Pink hands against pink and purple shapes in watercolor

Life Dinner

blood stained dress shirt
creeping dew on windowsill flowers
on grave tree dripping sap
bee killing itself in sweetness
licking honey from thorn
cooked spinach wilting
burnt tongue salt opening
a pathway home alone
with the moon blisters
from new shoes from
tea kettle from bath water
all this a ripe tomato
about to burst in an oven
heart ready to eat

Moon Poem

From behind pointed fingers,
museum fluorescence and telescope glass,
I wane and whine, shine on cornfields
where lovers fuck and bodies are buried
and I wish I was a body being buried,
wish I had a body to bury, wish
I was being fucked by an ear of corn
or a man or was at least a black hole
so I had a hole to be fucked wish I wasn’t
pocked ashen rubble catfishing
the world with wonder.

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Courtney Cook is an MFA candidate at the University of California, Riverside, and a graduate of the University of Michigan. An essayist, poet, and illustrator, Courtney’s work has been seen in The Rumpus, Hobart, Lunch Ticket, Empty Mirror, and Maudlin House, among others. Her illustrated memoir, THE WAY SHE FEELS, is forthcoming from Tin House Books in Summer 2021. When not creating, Courtney enjoys napping with her senior cat, Bertie. You can find her work on her website, courtneycook.me, and follow her on instagram at @thewaycourtneyfeels and @artschoolpariah.

Andrew Marathas is a longtime writer and arts educator living and working in Salem, Massachusetts with a history of facilitating arts summer camp programming for teenagers in Connecticut and teaching higher ed materials and concepts classes for college-age illustrators in Massachusetts. He graduated from Montserrat College of Art in 2007 with a BFA in Illustration. More of his works can be found on social media @andrewmarathas – or simply through his website, www.andrewmarathas.com.