Excerpts from City of Quartz

Cristiana Baik


i.  “Say the time of moon is not right for escape"


Here I sleep in a stranger’s bed. You

don’t mind. You keep              

rearranging bedroom furniture—a nightstand

transforms into a window, 4 pm light

flight to barrage gleaming corners of bedroom         

walls, all shoring up to splinter. Golden

rims. A clumsy core terrain. So

what sort of illusion is this, a body

always shimmering

to splinter.



( . . .)



ii. "Three trees were maimed on their account, and I am keeping count"           


It is in this dream that you murder her birds.


In a climbing tapestry of forestry

saw-toothed landing shadows—

breech of light like a Jacob's ladder.            


At first what's seen scatters

in glow-smoke and manufacture,

then an eye-crash, feathered

light, air luminous, bodiless.


Cristiana Baik
Cristiana Baik

Cristiana Baik is a poet and writer. She is finishing her first book, based on Lewis Carroll’s Through the Looking Glass, in the quiet hiatus of Duluth, Minnesota, and curating an upcoming poetry series based on the practice of erasures for Evening Will Come. She has been published by various journals, including Conjunctions and American Letters & Commentary, and has written reviews for the Boston Review and Jacket magazine. Cristiana served as one of the first Open City fellows for the Asian American Writers’ Workshop from 2010 to 2011, focusing on Sunset Park.