Jenna Murray

It Was Your Fault

boys with pocket knives used to carve

their initials into the bark of trees; now they cut

into your flesh. pins sticking in,

a little plush tomato no one can eat;

your grandmother fixed the stitches

after a dare ripped your tube top off & stuffed it

into a bottle, sent out to sea—looking

for the razor in your candy, you forgot

your red solo cup & suddenly

you are an empty plate:

did you put on your coconut cream?

there is no seasoning

in the cupboards of sexual greed,

an oasis of free roofie where you forget

to count your drinks.

your legs were a fabric so silky

they couldn’t resist threading their bones in between.

thank your skeleton for hiding

beneath an ugly coat of paint

this weekend when the varsity swim team

decides you are not worth a $100 fee.

the pixie dust you loved at age five

was laced with a kiss & a sniff

sold your vulva to a group of lucky men.

their guns aimed straight for your head

as the sunlight washed in, all over your face:

you questioned the taste

of their holy communion, confirmed into the religion of pinned down

ecstasy, when broken eyelashes & irresistible drool scabbed your cheeks,

I heard you had to watch their brothers baptize at the sight of your shrunken torso, bent

over a composite of hairy legs & unkempt beards & lighthearted sin.


Jenna Murray is a junior at SUNY Geneseo studying English (creative writing) and communication (journalism & digital media). When she is not writing, she spends her time focusing on photography, music, and traveling. You can find her attempting to skateboard around Geneseo, or playing with her cat, Suki.