Butterfly Soup 

The Monarch butterflies lie still in a bucket

full of stymied water. Who could have been

so mean to kill one beauty of nature’s companions?

We search the world for this kind of baseness

and find it in the bodies who had been abused

by their mothers, switches the size of tree trunks

in their children’s thinking or shut rooms

the width of claustrophobic turret castles

in their children’s imaginations.


When the silver scars in the evil ones’ brains

itch and then glisten, they know it is time

once again to mutilate that which tumbles

freely near a mute reality.


Glass Pictures


Glass pictures used to stand strong,

reminding me of my childhood days

when Mama hung them up in the living

room before the church ladies came

for coffee, doughnuts, and spiritual


Now, they look like what one sees

in a kaleidoscope, topsy- turvy glass

whose purpose is to nick fingers,

the blood, a birthday present, for

that was the only day we children

were permitted to touch a glazed


discrepancy about the value of the shards,

we still cried but one, for in every

loss is a happy pickpocket.


In the Dungeon


Her tongue manufactures clever words,

but no one hears her because

she has chosen to live in a dungeon.

When she was a child, every word she

stated was placed in a journal so that

one day she could string the words

together like pearls before tying

them into a best seller.

But the pressure to perform a story

with just ten random words before small-

town residents was more like donkey-work

to her six-year old frame—so she

left her family to find the caves

of her babyhood.


After she tripped over a false memory,

she saw the palace where she could

live by stepping down the famous steps

that led to her favorite king’s dungeon.

Her words would be the casualty

of the war between her and her parents.

The king left her alone to play

with her words, each one the color

and strength of a blizzard.

A crate of bones, she dies happily.


Claire T. Feild’s most recent book is a creative non-fiction book titled A Delta Vigil: Yazoo City, Mississippi, the 1950s. It is a book about Claire’s growing up white and female in Yazoo City in the 1950s. For ordering information, etc., please e-mail Claire at ctillandsia@gmail.com

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