Sarah Fawn Montgomery

Ordering In

The flowers are dead
on arrival—brittle reminders
that nothing grows simply
because we hope
pretending makes the world
different. You insist
on planting sticks
in a ground teeming
with ticks that would bleed
us slick red like the cardinal
screaming all summer
for a mate and winter’s
return so he will matter,
beauty in a broken
landscape, barren like we feel,
like the shredded box left
on our doorstep with oil
for cooking and hot sauce,
herbs already wet and stinking
alongside the overturned daffodils,
roots twisting and thirsty,
a cement stain where the lantern
fell, scorched this threshold.



Sarah Fawn Montgomery is the author of Quite Mad: An American Pharma Memoir (The Ohio State University Press 2018) and three poetry chapbooks. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in various magazines including Bellingham Review, Brevity, Cincinnati Review, DIAGRAM, Electric Literature, LitHub, The Poetry Foundation, The Rumpus, Split Lip Magazine, and others. She is an Assistant Professor at Bridgewater State University. You can follow her on Twitter at @SF_Montgomery