The Waiting Room

Poetry / Helli Fang

i’ve tried / to unwind the length of my shadow / across the field
where we peeled our ankles to wipe our brows / a bare-throated
finch trying to fill the desert clefs / with the hips of newspaper
wads / & i have stood here for six sunfalls / scraping my mouth
clean in the cold / a lacecut membrane with beaded eyes / piking
past a throatful of sand / as if made to douse these hours in wind
/ bodies surrendered to a loose boned fist / pulled inside another
ill-fitted anatomy / where we swallow our bones like pythons &
pray for our names to be called // so how are we supposed to kill
a disease / if no one is there to watch it burn / our figured lungs?

Helli Fang is a senior at Walnut Hill School for the Arts in Natick, Massachusetts, and will be attending Bard College in the fall. Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in The Glass Kite Anthology, Souvenir Lit and more, and has been recognized by the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, Bennington College, Columbia College of Chicago, and The Adroit Journal. She has also attended the Iowa Young Writer's Studio. When Helli is not writing, she enjoys playing the violin and climbing trees.