top of page


By Lucy Farcnik

Image is of a blue denim fabric.

CW: allusion to sexual assault

Two legs, one waistband

half a whispered no.

Their cotton wouldn’t make my skin crawl

if it weren’t for the handprints

left dank and rotting on the hips.

Light mirrors in a dull sort of way

off the only brass button keeping them shut,

embossed with words that fell short of something like

save me.

I made excuses for tripping over the cuffs

that drifted past my ankles,

like snowbanks in Halifax at 4 a.m.

The zipper broke six months later,

rusted with the blood that had soaked the copper seams

and seeped slowly backwards into my skin.

I’d force myself to wear them

until I could forget all the hands praying on my stomach,

unrepenting at the gaping mouth

of vintage zipper teeth

too worn to be sharp.

Sometimes I hear them crawling in the drawer,

deafening stains begging

for one more drop of bleach,

another midnight scrub in the bathroom sink.

One day I will iron my fear smooth,

like creases on knees,

fold it hand-over-hand

and put it away.


bottom of page