Mallory Pearson

i want to be the smallest kind of small 

that i can be. i recently learned 

about the things a poltergeist can do to the body 

and i’m afraid to close my eyes at night, 

the lights left on in the hallway so i can imagine 

someone is waiting up to keep me safe from the dark. 

i want to crush my body up 

until it runs red, then clear, make my bones 

the sweetest kind of sweet that they can be. 

i want to fall asleep to the sound of the rain. 

if i think about it in reverse, maybe 

you were good for me after all, and it was worth it 

to butterfly myself and pin my skin to the crumbling walls. 

i want to be a shadow in a box under a microscope, 

some dark shape that no one can quite tack in place, 

a sliver of light behind the teeth of a lover. 

is it too much to ask to fit into a locket? 

is it rude to fold my bones in half 

and avoid the places where your eyes 

burn right through the floor? 

most mornings i can’t bring myself 

to be someone worth searching for. 

am i still waiting or did you knock on the door? 

i want to be the size of a keyhole, rusted and quiet. 

i want to be a gasp in the head of a needle 

stuck in its cushion, a tense touch in the dark.  

Mallory Pearson is a 21-year-old painter, jeweller, and poet currently living in Brooklyn, NY. She has a great interest in spirituality, sexuality, and femininity, and spends most of her time quickly getting bored of new hobbies.