Three Poems

Jessica Housand Weaver

Mount St. Helens


A quake bucks

against the flush plates

of my heel, up


to my skull, a jolt

that builds like toxicity, red

in the cheek


hot on the hand

volcanic, throaty sounds

sulfurous spit


molten words mad enough

to flatten homes 

vaporize stone, crush


granite into glass—


disposing a black pane

between us, jagged, as your lip

erupting under my fist.



Tin Man

Along the concrete wall, tagged,

they sit there stooped--old winter

coats smoking with dust, grey

caps hugging hairless crowns,

dribbling and spitting
like rusted faucets.
Hobbling one by one,
the steel-faced golems rise,
a dim procession decorated with holes,
braving handouts of bread,
while bystanders look away,
fiddling with phones in their palms.
A Styrofoam coffee cup trembles

in Tin Man’s hands, reminding

him of youth, riding first class
decked in uniform on R&R,

shots still ringing in his head,
shrapnel scrawled onto a medal
hanging, leaden, against his heart.



The Collision


Thirteen years since the century revolved

wide-eyed, the fickle lashes of my youth

scorched closed along that fat Southern

highway, beaten into asphalt and pine

where I’m trying to recover the bits.


I found him, still smiling, on a memorial

page, as if we could be face-to-face,

press teenage lips against damp cyber

cheeks, a jpeg weighing down my hard drive

and the dusty laptop searing my thighs.


Once we were tongue-tied under a macadam

road, semis threatening our heads, eruptions

of hail pouring all around, the strangest

surprise in his eyes—



They said the rearview mirror was unbroken

somehow, the shattering suspended





                                              Pixels in my lap.

 About the Writer

​​Jessica is an internationally published author and poet. She is currently working on her MFA in Creative Writing and has served as co-editor of Gravel. Her publication credits include or are upcoming in: Stone Soup Magazine, Poetic Voices Magazine, Conceptions Southwest, The Dark Fiction Spotlight, Mused-The BellaOnline Literary Review, Malpais Review, Fickle Muses, The New Poet, Crack the Spine Literary Magazine, Mocha Memoirs Press, and Red Ochre Lit, among others. Her short stories have won awards. She was also a nominee for the Jack Kent Cooke Graduate Arts Award. You can view her website at