As the Sun Rises, The Brother Disappears in the Shape of an Acorn.


He’s sleeping again, and inside
he dreams that he cannot eat,
cannot sleep—

and then he can’t.

Not like this.

Not in this room labeled C3
on the second floor—

on the kidney side

of the hospital.


And then, I’m addressing you—

You are lost again,
your usual stomach pains.

Your body, falling
under your skin


the act of falling

until you grow a new layer,
your layer of Seattle skin

and rain.

You watch a man as he falls asleep
at a poetry reading, the girl

one seat over rotating a ring
back and forth

over the knuckle—

the sleet and snow—

all silver, like a string
of lights on the balcony

in the window

like small swans.


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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