Holes in Drywall Made by a Fist

Kathleen Winter

Holes in drywall made by a fist

are uneven, erode. They leak —

steadily, steadily — dust.

What arguments gave rise to them

you ask — these craters pocking walls to the side of windows.

Holes make a living room appear askew,

deranged. Whoever wanted out couldn’t get there.

Or maybe they were made to scare a lover —

she froze, amazed, the first time he swung

for the wall, jaw clenched & on impact

the fight flooded out of her, limp

now, not even screaming, dazed,

taking in the concrete nature of her

fear, a dense & solid thing

she knows must fit inside her brain

despite its size, refrigerator weight,

its trick of slipping

into dreams she’ll have all week

of dust, propelled in storms

across the base, the sure report

of her erasure —


about the author