Poem by Emilee Kinney

December 15, 2023

Ghost Apples

Winter sneaks into the orchard before
rotten apples fall, creeps up trunk and bough,
encases the blackened fruit with ice, mirrors
its form. My therapist tells me, I become
overripe remains, the gala-mush that slips
its ice-shell like a hand freed from a glove.
Or I’m the empty glove, vacant icicle.
She says, an ice-shell is not sustainable—
or a shell is not a person—or something
about a sense of self needed for survival.
I don’t tell her I’ve lost her thread of analogy.
I think of a doe reaching for false apples
in winter, the crack and slice into her gums
like glass, the red snow, all she left behind.

About Emilee Kinney

Emilee Kinney hails from eastern Michigan, near Lake Huron. She is pursuing her PhD at the University of Southern Mississippi. Her work has been published in Passages North, West Trestle Review, Cider Press Review, SWWIM, and elsewhere.

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