Poetry / Poets / Writers / Writing

Poems by Meggie Royer

Earhart to Howland

Amelia, the pool has been drained here, two solid footprints

resting in its basin like moon furrows. Just days ago the neighbors

found the body of a fawn curled beneath the water,

its velvet fur matted in slumber.

When they lifted it from the concrete

its limbs folded like wings, Amelia.

They buried it behind the church,

its edges dipped in dirt,

just another downed comet.

Amelia, I thought of you then,

your last known transmission, your shadow on the ocean surface.

Wonder if the footprints were your trespass,

if the fawn was your passing forgiveness

for all the ones who couldn’t find you in time.


Scenes from a Marriage

Grandmother dug him out of the lake next to the wood,

his fingers curled around reeds, pockets threaded with silt.

A small frog tucked into his cufflinks, their silver long tarnished

into copper, its belly bloated with sound.

We sat him at the dinner table;

she wanted to place an orange in his mouth

like they do with pigs, or an apple, something round and sweet.

I had to remind her he was here as a guest,

not a meal or a savior.

Everything ends.

A widow’s heart, the skyline, some grave

you dug yourself out of just to get to the horizon.

She wanted to keep him,

to let the story follow its course this time,

one more life inside her bed.



My mother dreams of Zarmina at night, the young Afghan girl

who set herself on fire to protest the love she was denied

and her beating

for writing couplets.

She stands over Zarmina’s grave, throws in seeds & salt,

watches her rise like a phoenix

from the pit, burqa wreathed in gold,

mouth opening to let in my mother’s ghost.

She gives herself up gladly to this girl.

Lets Zarmina feed on every bone and poem,

marrow and all, her sunken grey face

haloed by light like a funeral pyre,

the kind widows jump on after their husbands die.

When she wakes my mother returns to her empty bed,

tries to remember the scent of my father’s body

but comes away with only ash.


Meggie Royer is a writer and photographer from the Midwest who is currently majoring in Psychology at Macalester College. Her poems have previously appeared in Words Dance MagazineThe Harpoon ReviewMelancholy Hyperbole, and more. She has won national medals for her poetry and a writing portfolio in the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards, and was the Macalester Honorable Mention recipient of the 2015 Academy of American Poets Student Poetry Prize. Her work can be found at www.writingsforwinter.tumblr.com.


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