Theadora Siranian


She was imminent, she was a blown-glass
     battleship, she pulled     the space

of the room in through her fingertips,          pushing

        back magic, cataclysms, destruction—

    she spoke of the chosen          and      the called-upon
she said the green light turns upward

                she told lies    and the hope
a white hole in my skin           even from the beginning

I smelled the possibilities burning away,
                heavy as low tide,
birds circling in the heat, spotting the light: dark, hungry hammers
           to my anvil

—everything was acrid like after a fire, we lost things in the fire
                     an explosion of nuclear breath
    a snow storm of heat:     in the morning,

        the summertime every day season moment
              she brought the fire to her lips

and she consumed     the sun        and all of its light

   —she radiated              was split open
                          in rays

blasting the image into the eyes of everyone
   and it burned a hole in me,      I could feel it happen

every moment was a hole in my body

        holy, holy body: the mother, the spirit, the ghost,
                    over and over

the love of a phoenix      the heat an eternity

    my navigator,                my first lost keeper

       the sensation of flame        you suck in

your lungs for a loved one

                little blond girl turned dark lovely

to be feared always

The Young Ones

Outside the basement window
the belly of winter:

cold has again undone the world.


On the inside, where the heat is,
what they believe to be passion

rises with frailty,
bits of ash

floating upward,

sticking to the smooth walls.


This is how they will learn
what it is to be


this handling of each other.

Inside the hollow core
of this season they burn,

brief singes

unremarkable against
the concrete skeleton of the cellar.


They hang suspended,

an escape, warding

off daybreak, motion

long silences driving for breakfast.


They cradle the permanence
of childhood

in their palms, fingers
closed gently,

opening their hands

to dust.


By the time teeth marks
fade from the insides of thighs
they are gone:

cast themselves away

from themselves.


Theadora Siranian is an MFA Poetry candidate at the University of Massachusetts, Boston. She has poetry published or forthcoming in Gigantic Sequins, mojo, elimae, DIAGRAM, and Mason’s Road. In 2007 she received the Academy of American Poets Prize from Emerson College, and in 2012 was selected for inclusion in the Best New Poets anthology series.