Volume 12 • Number 2 • Fall - Winter 2020

Kate LaDew

Ten Irregulars

1. May 25, 2020

You can cover your eyes. The break in the world when breath stops and a heart cuts off always echoes.

2. Now that you're gone, lungs turned to glass,

You look different in old pictures. I see what's in store for you, and you look back at me with such hope.

3. A time for departure

This isn't the 1300s or even the 1900s, so I almost don't believe it. But Tennessee Williams choked to death on a pill bottle top, so I guess just about anything can happen to anybody.

4. Church steps and tear gas

You hold up the bible the way a child holds up a Christmas present they don't want, forced to look at the camera and pretend. But you don't even pretend.

5. Wear, Wait, Wash

I close my eyes as I step outside, readjusting to the pulsating sunlight on my glasses, pull my mask a little tighter and cling to the hope gloves, a dash of soap, a squirt of sanitizer and six feet from the masses, provide us all we need to survive and save our asses.

6. The difference between poisonous and venomous.

Bite it and die, it's poisonous. It bites you and you die, it's venomous. What if we bite each other?

7. 2020

As my Sims scream, on fire in a room with flammable sofas and no doors, I think, You're tellin' me.

8. We Demand Haircuts

Crowds of people, big as the country, climb a building and jump. When we ask what it feels like, they yell up, pretty good so far, like flying.

9. Defunding

Millions of people stand in a line, asking politely not to be killed, while millions more perform a functional check on their service revolver: trigger mechanism, safety, slide operation and locking, magazine retention, rejection systems. Each check verifies the weapon is in perfect working order. Let the fun begin.

10. Curve

She snorts softly, watching spiking graphs, a map of the country bleeding red, over images of free people demanding liberation.

Kate LaDew is a graduate from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro with a BA in Studio Art. She resides in Graham, NC with her cats Charlie Chaplin and Janis Joplin.