Holly Day’s poetry has recently appeared in The Cape Rock, New Ohio Review, and Gargoyle. Her newest poetry collections are A Perfect Day for Semaphore (Finishing Line Press),  In This Place, She Is Her Own (Vegetarian Alcoholic Press), A Wall to Protect Your Eyes (Pski’s Porch Publishing), I'm in a Place Where Reason Went Missing (Main Street Rag Publishing Co.), and The Yellow Dot of a Daisy (Alien Buddha Press).

The Old Green One

Holly Day


I will make you a music box from a porn star

fill her insides with gears and whistles, a key

that comes out of her navel for turning

in the hot summer sun

or under the stars at night.


When our daughter is older, I will explain the porn star

in the basement, tucked away with your dirty magazines

your crumpled, dented trombone. I will tell her how even music

can be base and indecent, and all that I know

about lonely breasts and constellations.

A Test of Vows and Faith

Holly Day


If a voice in the middle of the night demanded

you offer up the life of your child, would you

gently wake him or her, saying 

Get dressed, you’re going to meet God?


Would you put our daughter in the back of the car, her eyes

still blurry from sleep, tell her to buckle her seat belt on

as you quietly pull out of the drive

and turn the car towards the mountains? Would you


think of waking me before you left

tell me this new story about God’s will

or would you hold your breath and carry your shoes

a finger on your lips in case our son tries to call out?


Or would you defy the command, close your ears

to the voice that promises miracles or piles on guilt

until you half-relent, immediately

regretting and retracting the promise of sacrifice?

An Argument Against Furniture

Holly Day


one should have cardboard boxes

and not furniture

in one’s house, dozens of empty

overturned refrigerator boxes, oversized moving boxes

perhaps set end to end, flaps joining one

to the next, like a giant rodent maze


or stacked, one atop another

like flimsy, defective coffins pushed against the  wall

at the back of the factory

perhaps waiting to be discarded

or sold to Halloween stores for prop-purposes only


because you can hide in a box

in a way you could never hide in a couch

or a chair

or an end table.

if someone was to come to the door

or peek through the window

or even push over the front door

the way friendly neighbors do on TV


they would not see you


in the dark of the living room, behind the couch

pretending to not be home—they would only see

a box, or boxes, a room full of boxes

and the more boxes you have

spread about the house

the more difficult it’ll be

for anyone to find you.