jennifer tung is a 19-year-old student at ohio state university
majoring in nursing. her work has appeared in the columbus dispatch,
the lancaster eagle-gazette, thunder sandwich, electric acorn,
voices, will soon appear in glass tesseract.
Works on this page:
tenacity in a midwestern cornfield
Tenacity in a Midwestern Cornfield
On the wires crows sing their funeral dirge as the Land below
them drains its last movement.
The flatness of the geography mocks the mind with
Its barren drought, its shriveled cornstalks
Collapsing under the heat of errors. Past mistakes
Shake their heads via zig-zag motions in the enduring
Inspiration is a wasteland here, sapped as
Moisture by the already-dying soil as if failure
Is further needed
To prove to this withering thinking-place that giving
up doesn't cease with
Surrender, endings differ
From ends. But the scenery crackles with just
One glance, the corn only have the memory
Of yellowing ideas long past gone
To grow for. And isn't that enough?
Continuing to wait
When the waiting has already left you,
Keeping up with something in a
Field of nothing.
Standing guard at the doorway -
Until you catch up with changing
And the change catches up with you.
There's not much to view: a wash basin
Crusted with rust, cockroach shit
On the cement floor, a pair of underwear,
A trash bag overflowing.
Is there still need for a mirror?
She scrubs at the dried blood
On her lips with a scrap of toilet paper.
Applies ointment. Rinses her hand, no soap.
Tugs at the bead chain to turn the bulb
A hand reaches inside her brassiere, fingers the
Money; the thoughts
In the room bulge in every direction like
Balloons under a faucet.
She stares at them.
In the dark, they look like obese red
to obese red stomachs
His obssession with stillness is stemmed
From the sagging mattress with the
Sienna stains that could have been
A wedding night or a rape, homicidal
Jealousy or heroin overdose. He draws
Genitals on embroidered dogwood,
Tracing the outlines of their interlocking jigsaw
Trash bags fly,
Pigeons fertilize fenced-in lots.
Sunlight baptizes him and
His hollow flowerpots, rust eating them both in
Cancerous outrage. Outside
Fly (why can't I).
His obssession with stillness has stemmed,