Sydney Shaffer

The Goats Grow Bigger Every Spring

In my head, I weigh down pockets with stones in exchange for the clearing

of chrysanthemum fields.

I stuff petals in my ears, I drown the world out, I just want to hear honey.

To stay as high as I am, I beg long enough that my molars stop breaking

through the glitter. There is no room for soaked sheets.

Sometimes the angels gossip about the feathers in my hair. I cannot

remember the last time something I swallowed stayed put.

Wait to hear a pin drop, for the fat to keep me warm. This sweet-toothed

jabber too loud.

I tuck into a new gown. It brushes the floor, I am floating. Buttons scallop

the skin—zippers indent my back like an opening paragraph.

Say thank you for freshly scraped knees, for the handing out of pastures.

Roll in the wind that coats the grass with pesticides. They’re no good for me

either. Swallow them with mouth closed, I still have manners to uphold.

The solstice is too yesterday to think about now. I gut myself, sell the rotten

parts for market money. I eat all the sweetbread the world offers.

Sydney Shaffer is a junior Creative Writing major at SUNY Purchase. She loves cats, coffee, really long walks in the snow, and poetry.