Karyna McGlynn  websize



















I Thought No One Would Ever Love Me


so I lay in my daybed at night

& fashioned myself a Future

Wife. Someone like the girl

up the street with the old tan

Volvo. The one with one foot

in volleyball & the other

in drama club. Maybe I hid

her bleach. Maybe I gave

her pearls & a satin-trim

robe. Maybe I cut her

diploma into fleur-de-lis

& dipped them in the dark

chocolate of my chintzy

desires. I installed My Wife

in a woody, masculine den

& made her whippet-willed

& full of brandy. I stole her

hairspray & gave her a letter desk

instead & an actual inkwell.

I gave her lockable, leather-

bound love. I imagined her parents

somewhere safe, warm & out

of the way. We summered in Monaco,

read nothing but Daphne du Maurier,

took our sun at the Top of the City.

She had a smile like a high-wire act

& a signature like a sigil. I never

stopped loving the way she slid

into day-old stockings like a snake

reassuming its shed. In truth?

Her name was Jill. She wore

athletic shorts & never spoke

to me. So I renamed her Miriam

de Havilland & had her

handle my correspondence.

We cohabitated fantastically.

I installed paintings throughout

our Morning Room: storm-

flecked seas, gold-framed

& foaming at the mouth!


Karyna McGlynn is a writer, professor, and collagist. She is the author of three poetry collections from Sarabande Books: I Have to Go Back to 1994 and Kill a Girl, Hothouse—a New York Times Editor’s Choice—and, forthcoming, 50 Things Kate Bush Taught Me About the Multiverse. Her work has appeared in The Missouri Review, Ninth Letter, The New England Review, Ploughshares, and The Kenyon Review. Recent honors include the 2020 Rumi Prize for Poetry, and the2020 Florida Review Editors’ Award in Fiction. McGlynn is an Assistant Professor of Creative Writing at Christian Brothers University in Memphis. [Find her at www.karyna.io or on instagram/twitter @karynamcglynn]


Terrarium with flaming muse  collage by Karyna McGlynn Terrarium with Flaming Muse, collage by Karyna McGlynn

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Author: Terence Winch