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Photo: Separate? by Johnny Swanson


“So, we went to the fairy counsel with all of our kingdom’s riches and begged for our brother’s life. Finally, our patron, the owl fairy, asked for a compromise. The tree fairy suggested someone take our brother’s place. My sisters and I agreed, but the dragon fairy demanded punishment to our brother for shedding innocent blood.”

“How can a dragon be innocent? Aren’t they evil?”

“Beyond good and bad there is a field, Claire. We will meet you there.”


my finger nails entrap blood,

forming brown crust crescent,

smelling of burnt copper.

an extraction both necessary and futile

as hopeless as murder.


Dear Best Friend,

Today, I saw a giant as he ducked his head into a bar’s door way. Is he under a curse, or is it really just a pituitary sneeze?

I wonder if he gets tired of reaching up then down for everyone?

I wonder how life treated him?

I wonder if the universe reaches up and out to greet him?

I am too shy to ask.


Dear Claire,

I think I am in love with you…