stand still, then spin in small circles.
eyes closed, mouth opened, window cracked.
let water pool in your mouth, push
it back out. unclench your fists.
run your tongue over your teeth.
step out of the glass, in front
of the mirror, in front of the window,
in front of your teeth.
square your shoulders like an outlaw.
when you see yourself, admire the new
gray strands in your hair, the lit golden fuse
of letting go, of setting fire, of forward—
the glamour of the morning-glories,
no need for roots, just water
and space and the promise
of returning light.
Erin Rose Coffin holds a Masters of Fine Arts in poetry from North Carolina State University. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Maine Review, Raleigh Review, Gulf Stream, Arcturus, Angel City Review, and Punch Drunk Press. She was a 2021 recipient of a residency at Goodyear Arts, and served as an editorial assistant for So and So Magazine. In 2016, she was a finalist in the North Carolina State Poetry Contest, judged by Yusef Komunyakaa, and in 2018, she judged the Carol Bessent Hayman Poetry of Love Award. She lives in Charlotte, North Carolina with her partner and her cat.
by Erin Rose Coffin
Winner, Ruth Stone Poetry Prize