Issue 11 – Winter 2006 – Jenna Cardinale

Jenna Cardinale


[Our mouths go— The gap]

Our mouths go— The gap
and also the gaping—
The ointment
on— Turn me
the color—

This is love but it feels—



A Long Interval is Smudged

The shadows of white— Half
hidden under her

A goddess drawn
with white—
The white speechless—

I wash white— I try
to touch you
with white—

Spasms of the same


[The stretch marks]

The stretch marks
still— Damp
against her—

One ambition showcased—

My father took my

But I know alarm—

It was best to keep
my mouth—



Jenna Cardinale is the author of Journals (Whole Coconut, 2006). The poems published in Free Verse are later additions to this series of collage poems. Her work also appears in recent or forthcoming issues of nthposition, Kulture Vulture, Court Green and Cannibal. She lives in New York, where she teaches poetry writing at Lehman College.