Spiritual Recession

by Suzanne Highland

my god made me a brutalist. an idolizer of concrete instead of autumn. disciple of architecture isolating one window from the next. my god still drops into my dreams sometimes. as a small safe or an ankle monitor. reciprocates my loyalty by shoving my face in it. even the trees behave more consistently. what once flapped from center saw its wings plucked. i pored over the book & the word i landed on was provincial. my god held a chisel & abstracted me of form til i was oriented toward utter devotion. & in my best dreams i still am. in those dreams even the buildings talk to each other. in those dreams you give me the word & the word is right. i look at my toast like so what. i look at my feet like so what, they bleed.

Suzanne Highland is a queer writer and teacher from Florida currently living in New York. She has an MFA in Poetry from Hunter College, where she received the Miriam Weinberg Richter Memorial Award in 2016. She has also received support from the Sundress Academy of the Arts, the Vermont Studio Center, and Brooklyn Poets, where she was a fellow in the summer of 2018. Her poetry has been published or is forthcoming in Willow Springs, Yalobusha Review, Cosmonauts Avenue, glitterMOB, and Bomb Cyclone, among others. She teaches critical writing to high schoolers as well as composition at Hunter College. Visit her online at www.suzannehighland.com and @emotingsweater.