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i love every thing that flickers
and a fresh hole
keep the cone in my step
when the body entered the action so i painted it

afraid your actions don’t belong to things
like a disappointing throw—now who is that for?
fog, lamp, candle,
camera, odor, pool
these are my things
the only things i like



i indeed
am flappable, i need to clean the printhead

dad’s a basic octopus, mother is millions of offspring
they sit in the sea, food & eaten
then she’s a tearing and shriveling
sad rag on the seafloor

one time, an artist made MOTHERS hugely out of neon tubing
set it on steel I-beams painted black, beneath a low ceiling

another time, he turned the lights on and off
on people

Kirsten (Kai) Ihns recently finished her PhD at UChicago, where she studied a form of attentional prosody she calls “aspect choreography” in contemporary experimental poetry and film. She makes short films, and is the author of one full length poetry collection, sundaey (Propeller Books, 2020), and a number of pamphlets, most recently with the Earthbound Poetry Series, slub press, and The Creative Writing Department. She lives and works in Chicago.

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More from Issue 8: Summer/Fall 2023

Eye of the Beholder


by Karen Tongson


Pursuit Is Everything: A Conversation with W. S. Di Piero

by David Biespiel