The Bright Women

by Erin Carlyle

They want to know
if men make the fog
rolling by. Did they   

level the trees 
near the river? 
She is with grandmother,

and a girl she once 
kissed in high school. 
The women can’t see

the other side, crack 
mussel shells as they walk. 
Grandmother can’t remember

her husband. She calls out 
for her son, swaddles 
her feet in scattered 

clothes like a baby.
The girl sits in her death
memory of dogs. She draws 

their bodies in the dirt 
with her finger. The women
make a fire and sleep.

Erin Carlyle’s work has been featured in literary magazines such as Up the Staircase Quarterly and Driftwood Press, and forthcoming in Prairie Schooner. Her chapbook, You Spit Hills and My Body, is published with Dancing Girl Press. She holds a MA in Literary and Textual Studies from Bowling Green State University and a graduate certificate in Gender and Women’s Studies from Western Kentucky University. Currently she is the Assistant Poetry Editor of Mid-American Review and holds a MFA from Bowling Green State University.