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Mackenzie Kozak

September 18, 2017


when i say catastrophe it is not exactly so,
not even when trimming a jagged edge
of road with a gearshift spurning its maker

when i say untenable as an exhale in a place
of corrupted lessons, chewing the edge of
my lips, slight outlaws

did i mean ambush, a dual imagining, did i
have the right to flee, did i own what leftover
sorrow i built and tore down and built again

everything calls me blessed, i know the fabric
i’m wearing, i wanted a way out of the other
into the old one, i wanted to fashion handcuffs

when i say there is better i have tied myself up
in scarves discolored by light, i am losing wind,
deciding, trying to carve out a place for it

Mackenzie Kozak is a poet living in Asheville, North Carolina. She holds a BA from Wake Forest University and an MFA from UNC-Greensboro, where she worked as poetry editor of The Greensboro Review. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Boston Review, jubilat, Prelude, Sixth Finch, and elsewhere.