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Poetry Competition Shortlist: “Martian Poem (A Riddle)”

Marie Campbell

Martian Poem (A Riddle)

This spider never blinks
But when she weeps
She rubs her eye with many-jointed legs.

Her breath clears from the bottom up
And underneath
She hold the prints of toes and
dripping smiles drawn with fingertips.

When insects fling themselves
Against her mouth
She licks her teeth with long
Black rubber tongues
And smears the juicy corpses.

Jagged cobwebs etch themselves in stone
Across her face, like veins—and overnight
Hairy strands of silk will sometimes fossilize
And cover her in hard, glittering lace.

Marie Campbell was shortlisted for the Oxonian Review Poetry Competition 2013.