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Cynthia Manick


Self-Portrait No. 11 (Climatology in Flux)

Your current age feels like a polar

jet stream, the joy of bills paid, the pop

and fizzle of name brand aged wines.

You now have a clear start to shock

and denial of dropped arches, joints

in need of patching after dancing

in red 3 inch heels. You are done

with thunderstorms that rolled through

your twenties, you’ve swallowed rain

shadows with eucalyptus leaves.

A woman without cares has plenty

of time for bridesmaid dresses

and office baby showers. Did you sign

Sarah's card? Have you thought about

freezing your eggs? The Low will be a 30%

chance of tears after a heat wave with

loose loving men, hard boiled goods

too much alive. Beware of depression

disguised as barometric pressure.

Or El Nino, those friendly people

who call you momma or mami

because your brown and  round. It leads

to flip-flops, binge eating frosted marble

cake, and old-school musicals. Dear

Conrad Birdie, you can still get it.

All your stories sit in trees and in credit

reports. The High will be a southern

oscillation– knowledge that you can be

wind too wild for taming if you choose.

Cynthia Manick

Cynthia Manick is the author of Blue Hallelujahs (Black Lawrence Press, 2016). A Pushcart Prize-nominated poet with a MFA in Creative Writing from the New School, she has received fellowships from Cave Canem, Hedgebrook, the MacDowell Colony, Poets House and the Saltonstall Foundation of the Arts among others. Winner of the 2016 Lascaux Prize in Collected Poetry and the 2018 Elizabeth Sloan Tyler Memorial Award, Manick is the Founder and Curator of the reading series Soul Sister Revue. Her poem "Things I Carry Into the World" was made into a film by Motionpoems, a organization dedicated to video poetry, and has debuted on Tidal for National Poetry Month and Reel 13 Shorts. Manick’s work has appeared in the Academy of American Poets Poem-A-Day Series, Bone Bouquet, Callaloo, Kweli Journal, Los Angeles Review of Books, Muzzle Magazine, The Wall Street Journal and elsewhere. She resides in Brooklyn, New York. She can be found on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

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