Headline, Here

Isabelle Shepherd

A child says, “I want all the days

to end so I can rest.” Already,
the problem we live with. Just another day

at the office. Two journalists shot live
on air; a viewer says they were

like real people. A language dies
every 14 days.

A grieving husband plants a ribbon
of sunflowers, tries to fall

in love again, but the women all feel
like the beach in winter, taste

like wine
left out overnight. We’re mining sunlight

these days, ain’t that something? I love

when the weatherman is wrong, when the rain
comes unbeckoned. A hummingbird

tries to drink from the chili peppers on my porch.
In India, a man jumps

from a building, doesn’t feel
the impact, walks away.

He dies within hours—internal bleeding.

Let’s not kid ourselves,
we’re all waiting for a break in traffic.

I’m talking nights spent chasing

dive bars, our past served up warm
with well liquor in a plastic cup.

Like a tap
running, then I thought, then I thought.

Isabelle Shepherd is an MFA candidate at the University of North Carolina Wilmington. When she isn’t writing, she’s reporting the news for WHQR, the local public radio station. In her spare time, she battles cat brier in the backyard, expands her vinyl record collection, and paints her nails wild colors only to chip off the varnish the very next day. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in DIALOGIST, Tinderbox, Connotation Press, and elsewhere.