2 Poems, by Joanna Cleary

Icarus’ Lover

I only wrote you sonnets, blank. The moon,
curved like a bone-white, immortal fish scale,
hid the face you had to reach beyond. You,
and your mythic blood of ocean. You, touched,
remade, pulled by tides. You and your heart, salt-
wounded. We drank sea from each other’s flesh
until we felt clean. When my shoulder blades
became bruised with baptism as I dove
after your wings of wax and unrhymed waves,
and breath gutted me back towards the sky,
I was free. In the ashes sent to shore,
the moon swept itself into the rued sun.
There is no more night. There is only you,
lover, and this blank body of the sea.


On Waiting

bb, u didnt phone like u promised,
so my phone battery went from 90
to 50% last night just like that.
i lost my charger but its a new phone
so im not that worried. its late again.
im naked (almost) b/c i like it
when i cn strut around, pretend to be
a victorias secret model, touch
my flesh. im writing a sexy sonnet
thats secretly (shhh) about you. 50
to 44%. u give me time
to pee, strip, pick away the skinny hairs
around my nipples, clean my thumb-printed
phone screen, gorge, brush my teeth, write another

fucking sonnet b/c its raining now
& later i want u to walk back home
with paper wet around ur fingers. babe,
its 39%. if u want me
to talk dirty ill say that i luv u
& make u so sad ull want to cuddle
instead of orgasm (& i wont even
tell anyone). honey, ur mind is sea
breaking into light; i dont understand
how u don’t know this. i need u. call me,
label my body in latin, read me
forgotten poems that rhyme as they should.
35%. when i fall asleep,
the word pls is in me like ur outline.


About Joanna Cleary

Joanna Cleary is an undergraduate student double majoring in English Literature and Theatre and Performance at the University of Waterloo. Her work has previously appeared or is forthcoming in The /tƐmz/ Review, The Hunger, and Subterranean Blue Poetry, among others. She is also currently a Poetry Editor for Inklette Magazine.