Hard Landing Sarah Stockton Eleven thousand, two hundred and forty-one housing shelters in the United States 2021 (gov-speak housing shelters because housing sounds better than homeless). Sheltering in some kind of better-than-nothing place. People sitting on a cot or cement floor, in line for food or the toilet, homeless in the sense of unusable, housed in the sense of taking up valuable space. Categorized as being elderly &/or disabled, &/or on welfare, victims of disasters, emergencies, desperate for family and crisis intervention, landing hard on crisis as life has landed hard on them. As it will eventually land hard on everyone, one way or another. Based on these projections we may determine that housing is important but not urgent, ranked lower than tax-shelters on capitalism’s scale. People, children, ranked. Ranked low on humanity’s scale.
Atlantis Sarah Stockton When you found me in that final, sundown hour I was already far beyond the swell tide ~ innocence receding craving the sandy curve of my hip, my webbed and banished soul, you caught me after I had descended into poverty, into loneliness two scavengers, you reached to taste the sun between my shoulder blades, my shell-encrusted breasts ~ jellyfish burns on my inner thighs ~ salt water trickling with regret
Sarah Stockton, MA is the Founder/EIC of River Mouth Review. Sarah’s poems have appeared in Glass Poetry, Psaltery & Lyre, The Shallow Ends, Rise Up Review, About Place Journal, and EcoTheo Review, among others. Her chapbooks include Time’s Apprentice (dancing girl press, 2021) and Castaway (Glass Lyre Press, 2022). Sarah lives in the Pacific Northwest by the Salish Sea.