Alison Prine

The Length of Time

I can’t stop thinking of the least likely cause of the bleeding.

I can’t stop hearing the music of hunger in my head.

I can’t stop seeing riddles in all of the facts.

And in my mouth, the taste of iron, repeating.

I run my hands through my hair –
remember when I cut it all off?

Remember when slowly I let it grow again?

I noticed the gradual return of strangers’ kindness.
A woman’s hair always has an audience.

I can’t stop smelling antiseptic, gauze, instruments.

There are chemicals they can inject just under the skin
to make your expressions go away.

Alison Prine

Alison Prine’s debut collection of poems, Steel, was chosen by Jeffrey Harrison for the Cider Press Review Book Award and was released in January 2016. Her poems have appeared in The Virginia Quarterly Review, Shenandoah, Harvard Review, Michigan Quarterly Review, and Prairie Schooner among others. She lives in Burlington, Vermont where she works as a psychotherapist. Know more about Alison Prine here