Day 1: Winter Winds Come Breaking

And then came more of the usual: “What do you see?”

She wanted me to see a pair of cities, wound within the desert like small hawks, branching shadows, hardened grain under green suns.

I could see the stone, the break, the climb of unnatural rock—and the bodies—the man and woman climbing away from the rooftops, born of them, extending into watercolors.

She replaced the notebook.

I wasn’t supposed to see their faces.


Summers turned to winters turned to cold. His body continued like all the others, somewhat clockwise. Irises appeared to darken with rain, skin to brighten with snow. The blood continued.

She wished she’d kept at least one of the pictures, something resembling a lock of hair, a dimple, a blur of color. The orange against the floor was like a bear, hanging from the ceiling, leaning on the walls—the white of the walls was spotted with small, framed portraits of lost children. What she perceived to be lost was another story.

His knuckles bloomed like cherries, fingers kneading into the cushions, turning his hands and the couch into something like sunrise. His eyes stared at the glass, see-through coffee table.

He’d forgotten her—forgotten the taste of water.

Image/Inspiration: Salvador Dali’s Archaelogical Reminiscence of Millet’s “Angelus” (1935)


About mckenzielynntozan

McKenzie Lynn Tozan lives and writes in Indiana, where she works as a virtual assistant, editor, and freelance writer via her self-started business, MLT Creative. She received her MFA in Poetry from Western Michigan University, where she worked as the Layout and Design Editor for New Issues Poetry and Prose and as an Assistant Poetry Editor for Third Coast. She previously completed her B.S. in Secondary English Education and B.A. in English, with a Concentration in Writing, at Indiana University South Bend, where she worked as the Managing Editor for 42 Miles Press. Her poems have appeared in Rogue Agent, Whale Road Review, the James Franco Review, Emerge Literary Journal, Encore Magazine, Thank You for Swallowing, The Spooklet, Sleet Magazine, and Analecta, among others; and her book reviews and essays have appeared on The Rumpus and Motherly. When not writing, she enjoys art and music, and the simple mathematics of being a wife of one, a mama of two, and a cat-mom of three. For more, visit View all posts by mckenzielynntozan

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