after Mimi Khalvati
Palms pressed together in prayer, you practiced nonviolence.
With daggers for eyes, it’d be better if you sought silence.
Dinner guests—their mouths agape, tongues sour, spines rigid in
bony chairs. You spoke out of turn because they taught silence.
The stranger’s presence clings to linen & skin when you awaken.
He left a note with his name & number—you caught up in silence.
Knees dusty, boots muddy, you descended the hushed, green trail.
Wind gusts & roaring engines blaring as you fought for silence.
In a sea of faces, the headless monster grasps gavel & mahogany
throne. You close blind eyes as you rise, knowing they bought silence.
The poet sits at her desk; thoughts converge—wholeness wholly
rejected. Ears will never open, M, for what is thought in silence.
Emily Hoover is a poet, fiction writer, and book reviewer based in Las Vegas. Her fiction has most recently appeared in Bird’s Thumb, BULL, and Gravel, and her poetry has been featured in Potluck Magazine and Five:2:One. Emily’s book reviews have been published by The Los Angeles Review, Necessary Fiction, Ploughshares blog, The Collagist, and others. She is known on Twitter and Instagram as @em1lywho.