Maggie Nipps




Each day I wake with a new fixation.

Today, a mourning ritual.


The act:

An envelope, tucked in, three sage
leaves and sealed with purple wax
dripped from a candle, waning



I resent the organic
the origin how
arcane the organs
I will an aria,
wild, inoperable



This afternoon, I watch Grey’s Anatomy and text
my mom to ask about her chemo. My favorite
line this episode: I resent an organ. I resent an organ.




I’m stitching an image—
blackberry juice running down
my sternum. I imagine the drippings,
sticky, tacky. My palm full of pulp.



The berry skin covered in little hairs.
Mammalian. The juice, just short
of milk. Then, the mulch
a mother. Oh mirror,
have my breasts
always been so fibrous?




Blackberries represent sorrow.
Though the vines, woven,
form protective wreaths.There are
no blackberry vines in the city—
my substitute, embroidery floss.



split stitch, a quick
fix. The thread
tangles to a bramble. Create
a sprig, but then, a needle pricks.




A text from my mom. Tired,
she says, and her fingernails
peeling up. She says she might
go to the farmers market for fresh fruit.


MAGGIE NIPPS is a poet and playwright from Wisconsin, currently studying at the University of Iowa. Her work appears or is forthcoming in Figure 1, Sporklet, No ContactSip Cup, petrichor, and elsewhere. She co-edits the lit mag Afternoon Visitor.