top of page

rachel stempel / poem

the war council & the salon


i was given a tortoiseshell comb, 

its frenzied teeth digging for a way in


hard & undeserving of love:

this prom updo i didn’t wear


at one point i took a bone saw, 

reclaimed my primordial jaw


naturally, 

i wanted openings


a runway


& as it split

the leg of the highest bidder,

skin-tagged & caught 

in fishnet, went limp


from the vinyl cracked armchair

i god myself to death


hygiene is electric blue, heavy

menthol, good burn


i’ve felt it before, the heat of 

perming solution


i know it’s not a real forever


then, a terrycloth slap 


what summer is this, you ask, 

you, who waits for partings


then, a terrycloth slap 


i god,

i god,

i god


 

Rachel Stempel is a queer Ukrainian-Jewish poet based in Binghamton, NY.

59 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All
  • Black Facebook Icon
  • Black Twitter Icon
  • Black Instagram Icon
bottom of page