Back to Issue Twenty-Four.

my worst habit



after Rumi

My worst habit is that I get so tired of winter
I am a torture to those around me.

I boil rice too long, serve this to my friends
who are too polite to refuse me.

We swallow locks of very blonde hair.
A panic of the throat.

This seems to be a permanent sensation.
The salted fish climbs onto  the grill

and returns to the water.
I don’t stop him.

Now the sea is made of salt.
Now we know thirst.

I am tired of winter.
Is this hell, this wanting?

My friend who loves me doesn’t answer.
My hair blondes in the heat of my kitchen.


Alia Bales is from Temecula, California. She recently received her MFA in Poetry from Eastern Washington University, where she served as Poetry Editor of Willow Springs and Willow Springs Books. She currently edits for the Swamp Literary Magazine, and has work forthcoming from Copper Nickel.

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