:: Article

Animals & other poems

By Emily Carney.


In Blankets

They take their turns placing dumbbells on top of one another, to keep reminded: these dreamlike qualities of rooms are ones of prevarication. The plumy way in which his dipper lip blooms up the word ‘wonderful’ wins her over: she buries a white nose beneath his ear.

At Home

They work hard to gyrate their round bodies full like circles, trying on that true shapes are not halves but simply overlap. She is at the window watching women cross the street in long dresses with great patterns. He is in the dining room spooning vanilla tufts from a plastic cup.

Being Authentic

She does not invite him to the wedding but arrives alone instead and wears black. When she opens up her leather parcel to put the mirrored things inside, the lube that they have bought together spills up and full among her rayon chest. Across town, he mulls over his mirror, licking the pause under his nose with a clover.

Being Consumers

She says nothing to the Goodwill clerk responding, ‘Andy Warhol dishes are twenty dollars apiece.’ He is feeling with his palm the heavy age of a spoon, enamored with—how long will it last him? Forever.

In Strange Places

Within the lucidity of her little nakedness, she peers along a digital pond. Rubs glittery teals and magentas to her eyes in oafish increments. He is grass-intent beside a mannequin in a toy jeep, and a long sleep. Their tongues wear sore with quiet.


keep poetic manifestations of qualities inside fish tanks until you find someone who encompasses them

structure statements about yourself in ways that are flattering, mentioning only the content that is both reasonably accurate and self-revering

buy fabric in the shapes of cardigans and pull them from your own shoulders in appropriate intervals

keep a thorough record of each time you have ever wanted to press the heart emoji

practice foreign philosophies consummated by your new lover, noting how strongly they are believable and that they are developments you suddenly feel grateful for

eat jell-o slowly, and pay closer attention to your own menstrual cycle

if you do not have a menstrual cycle, pretend to have a menstrual cycle

Emily Carney lives in Connecticut. She has been published in Poetry Magazine, Rookie Mag, Hobart, and Electric Cereal. Her debut poetry collection, Old & Young Porn, will be released from Electric Cereal in 2016.

First published in 3:AM Magazine: Tuesday, September 22nd, 2015.