‘Calico Ghost’ by Kathleen Rooney & Elisa Gabbert

— Reneé Bibby

Alright, America, we’ve had our fireworks, our God-bless, and big band sound as an unironic hats off to our country, but it’s July 5th so blink away that after-burn of big lights to find more nuanced and complicated commentary on our country. Kathleen Rooney and Elisa Gabbert’s poem ‘Calico Ghost,’ feels like a post-4th poem. Or, a poem written from the shadows of the 4th of July, by the women of the new country who understood a declaration of independence was not the same for them as it was for men. Women who were hemmed in left and right until they grew roots right down deep to the earthly, witchy power that would fuel their persistence. The mad women, the fallen women, the saintly, wealthy, and disenfranchised women of 1776, and just as aptly, the women of today. All the women whose “feline vision shines in darkest night.”

Split Lip Magazine