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No Nightmares During the Tornado Warning

CJ Scruton

All is well. I woke bloodlessly to the alarm

this time. The storm came in the night

and I slept through it—and I could have been

in the basement, should have been hurt,

but my open secondfloor windows,

the sirens, your call

and the phone five inches from my ear

couldn’t take me there, there

is no danger, anymore. The cold front has moved in,

darling—the downed branches

will house ants and breeding mosquitoes again.

The air always tastes like wet burning wood, when

the cool comes in this place—when I so often

wake up having wept, and gone back to sleep.

CJ Scruton is a trans, non-binary poet from the Lower Mississippi River Valley who is currently living on the Great Lakes, where they teach and research ghost stories. Their full-length poetry manuscript has been a semifinalist for the Pamet River Prize at YesYes Books and a finalist for Willow Springs Books’ Emma Howell Rising Poet Prize. Their work has appeared in Shenandoah, The Journal, New South, Juked, and other journals.

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