i was waiting not to be alone in my body
i was waiting for a smooth incursion
i was waiting and the river got dark around me
it took my fury and did not need.

           when you leave you always close
the door so softly, like you didn’t mean it.
ooooohow do i wear its simple language
ooooohow do i learn not to hear it

ars longa, vita brevis est, says the frontis
piece of the flooded art museum—it says this
to the river, like a reminder—


oooooooooooooooperhaps you could come back later.




Kirsten Ihns is a first year MFA candidate in poetry at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. Her poems have appeared previously or are forthcoming in The Offing, BOAAT, POOL, Euphony Journal, and The Midwesterner.