POETRY : An Exhibition of the Painful Plants that Grow from My Organs by Bryan Edenfield

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An Exhibition of the Painful Plants that Grow from My Organs​​ 

See them hack

away with their​​ 

sharp things.


See them contemplate

viscera, paint, and

tissue texture.


See them emerge

in full bloom from

beneath bone.


See them calmly

become thorns that

puncture vital parts.


See them release

their children into a pit

of stomach acid.


See them snarl

eyeless and lipless,

faces without meaning.


See them populate

the forest floor​​ 

with debris.


See them sing

their roots deep

into my spine.


See them slice

the skin with talons

grown from mulch.


See them drain me.



I’m grateful to bask

in the sunlit pink

noise, untangling​​ 

the nooses of clover.


I have faint memories

of my death: a cut up

siren awakes angry.


Acknowledgements (thank you):


Carrel, the God of Cubicles, son of Stakhla and Oleum

Silica, the Goddess of Glass, sister of Exaquaria

Loco, the God of the Trains, lover of Stakhla

Amber, the Goddess of Electricity, wife of Cable, mother of Elevare

Stakhla, the Goddess of Steel, daughter of Mason, mother of Loco and Carrel and Ingeny, and wife of Oleum, mistress of Loco, sister of Stratos and Chase

Oleum, the God of Oil, father of Loco, Ingeny, and Carrum, and husband of Stakhla, lover of Stratos

Exaquaria, the Goddess of the Sewer, half-sister of Silica, daughter of Gast and Demole

Stratos, the God of Roads, son of Mason, brother of Chase, mistress of Oleum

Torch, the God of Lamps, son of Pulpa, brother of Mason

Chase, the God of Parks, son of Mason, brother of Stratos and Stakhla

Pulpa,​​ the Goddess of Paper, mother of Mason and Torch

Elevare, the Goddess of Elevators, daughter of Amber and Cable

Cable, the God of Wires, son of Demole, husband of Amber, father of Elevare

Mason, God of Construction, father of Stakhla, Stratos, Brug and Chase

Sciss, Goddess of Blades, wife of Mason, mother of Chase

Demole, the Goddess of Demolition, sister of Mason, mother of Cable and Exaquaria and Cowrie​​ 

Gast, the God of Waste, father of​​ Exaquaria, husband of Demole, father of Exaquaria and Cowrie

Cowrie, the Goddess of Porcelain, daughter of Gast and Demole, sister of Exaquaria and half-sister of Cable

Carrum, the God of the Automobile, son of Oleum and Stratos

Ingeny, the Goddess of Engines, half-sister of Carrum, daughter of Oleum and Stakhla

Baeke, the God of Plastic, son of Oleum

Neon, the Goddess of Invention, mother of Mason and Juno

Juno, the Goddess of Money, sister of Mason

Smeaton, the God of Concrete, son of Mason

Alchemicus, the God of Chemicals, the brother of Neon

Sharkara, the Goddess of Sugar

Ergon, the God of Work and Energy, father of Sharkara, Mason, Amber, Oleum

Hvel, the God of Wheels

Vindauga, the Goddess of Windows, daughter of Silica and Hus

Brug, the God of Bridges,​​ son of Mason

Hus, the God of Houses, brother of Pulpa


Bryan Edenfield was born in Arizona but has lived in Seattle since 2007. His work has most recently been published in the Construction Magazine, Meekling Review, Dryland, Plinth, Vanilla Sex Magazine, SUSAN: The Journal, and Fourth & Sycamore. He is currently one of the Jack Straw Writers for 2018.