Back to Issue Six.

Fried Eggs Holy



I look on the sunnyside—
I’m fat but not so fat
no one will love me. I fit

into plane seats, my hair
smells of strawberries. I push the urge to kill
beneath my pillow, open my window—

see the green grass beneath a premature snowstorm
golden. I feel like a pine
whose body can’t bald or run,

who remembers each year as a ring
and nothing more. Like all good trees, I need water
and an egg. Poets lie. They say

The world is enough, say
Each day opens its palms of birdsong,
but most days I don’t give a shit

about birds. I watch sun
harden in the pan, eggspit
turn white as angels.

Claudia Cortese’s poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Best New Poets 2011, Blackbird, Crazyhorse, DIAGRAM, and The Kenyon Review Online, among others. Cortese recently completed her first book of poetry, which explores trauma, myth, fairy tales, and girlhood. She lives and teaches in New Jersey.

More by Claudia Cortese:
Bowl of Cheetos Holy,” Poetry, Issue Six.
Next to Godliness,” Poetry, Issue Ten.
The girl plants knives,” Poetry, Issue Six.