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 Zara Joan MILLER
 THREE poems

15 01, 04 04  
& 01 01 21 
                (la noria)

15 01

If I’m the fly on the wall you’re curling
your iguana tongue around me
to witness your life unfolding she said
is the key getting stuck and your strange grace
in forgetting I could never be as graceful as that. 
you’re on the ocean floor she whispered 
underneath all currents
the way its hand opened and closed in
feeding, a pink anemone stuck to the breast.
the door rings, it’s for you:
must be nest-building I say
interrupting your spaghetti
taking out twin loans
to the punch bowl, I’m the ladle
getting greedy. really scraping that seabed
for coral, cubed fruit.
forgive me she said
twirling the last mouthful around
your fork—where I want to be
curling from your
vortex so bad

04 04

Brine kind of skirts the
 edge—this little dish
    i’m sitting in. cancelling
        all meetings to
            be closer to the bowl
                the one that takes it all
            away. I don’t want to think
            about where we’re
                    the season for picking
                    is up and besides
                        the two big
                          lights decide
                          how quick
                    that belt clicks 
                          mad hot rhythm
                          you crushed
                          her house once
                            underfoot. still
                    your own pain
                    unforgivable. lost
                    your keys again in
                        the grass
                        my window with
                  a brick
                         you’re so
                   naughty. that is,      
                      having nothing
                         naught a  
                         like this snail
                            you just made a
                                           slug of

        01 01 21 

                            (la noria)

the bell rang
rang another
no one heard /
baby get me off
this island it’s sinking
the tonsil of the night still
busy coughing up the year
are you really leaving me / am i really leaving you
dragging a foot. we never dropped anchor just got caught in weeds
we have the swans at least, a neck to wrap us anaconda-tight in the snow
in the perfect paracetamol moon i’m downloading Duolingo finally learning the Spanish for Ferris
wheel. since the fare went up i’ll skip the candy floss, just buckle in beside you / watch the grass
slip away / that sad jingle begin

Zara Joan MILLER is the author of BLUE MONDAY (JOAN Publishing, forthcoming 2022). Her work has appeared in MAP Magazine, Fieldnotes Journal, Another Gaze and Flash Art. Her short films have been screened at venues including Ann Arbor Film Festival, Lausanne Underground Film & Music Festival, Sunaparanta, Goa Centre for the Arts, Cafe OTO and xviix (see here).



Zara Joan MILLER, from ‘Untitled (yellow),’
16mm still, © 2022


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Partner to a press called Tenement, Hotel is a publications series for new approaches to fiction, non fiction & poetry & features work from established & emerging talent. Hotel provides the space for experimental reflection on literature’s status as art & cultural mediator. 

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