Sonnet for my Grandmother's Wedding Ring

by Megan Neville

In the dream I’m a migrating bird halted

dead in flight, swallowed and spat from a

familiar reflection. Ring finger escaping

my lurid mouth, I awaken to an intrusion

in my throat, static crackling in my chest.

I couldn’t have – I did – I’ve consumed

it before it can devour me. Laughing,

Vishuddha mutters something about truth-

telling, about self-expression, about the

color blue. Choke, vomit, or let metallic

poison leech into quivering viscera? I gag.

I hack. No use. Institution internalized:

it is part of me now. At least I once had

a coal-hot choice she was never allowed.

Megan Neville is based in Cleveland, Ohio, where she teaches English and stares longingly at stacks of unread books that always have to wait until summer break. Her work has been published by or is forthcoming in English Journal, Belt Magazine, Whiskey Island, Barren Magazine, Tilde, Moonchild Magazine, Into the Void, and others. She tweets @MegNev.

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November 2018

© 2020 by The Esthetic Apostle