• Vol. 06
  • Chapter 09
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The Magnetic Ms. Stella

I called her Ms. Stella.
No reason. Just did.

She was supposed to be
a metal art installation.

I started by grave-robbing
contents of the junk drawers.

Found a big magnet, a zygote
lump of lead that pulled and
tugged iron like a Siren's song.

First came 2 screws, 4 bolts,
8 nuts, a spread of morulas.

Then came razor blades,
and forks, doorknobs,

then hinges and a pair
of wire-rim glasses.

By day’s end there were
more than 128 objects
clinging to that zygote.

She was now Ms. Stella.
But she was brainless.
Harmless. Dead as nails.

Couldn’t hold a crayon.
Couldn’t write her name.
Couldn’t swim or float or fly.


The Magnetic Ms. Stella

As I ate breakfast one morning,
Stella propped in the chair that
I'd always considered my own,

watching bits of iron, tea strainers,
and potato peelers clapping on
to her like paint on canvas,

I looked at her and thought,
“You poor thing. You’re just
a vacant dock needing a boat.”

Stella slowly turned her head,
her glance brutal as cold metal.

“How do you spell boat?” she said
with a voice that invited chaos.