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my mania as an alaskan summer
zackary medlin

like watching the dark

never darken past the blue

burn of an alcohol flame

igniting the purple bloom

in the fields of fireweed

stretched across the land

like a lavender perfume

wafting off a someone

you want to dance with

slowly tongue to tongue

in tiny untying circles

when three drinks in

at a party where everyone is

charming & smitten with new

like a third act in a teen

comedy where a beauty is

recognized to be sumptuous

without her glasses

it’s hard to see a thing

save this innumerable neon

light spilled on a rain-glossed

street like a gasoline puddle

prettied to rainbow by sun

I’m a match to strike

& flick into the fuel


watch the flame leap lurid

bursting out of existence

the smoke snaking itself

into itself an uroboros

blurring into the inevitable

far darkness to come

Zackary Medlin is the winner of the Nancy D. Hargrove Editor’s Choice Prize, the Patricia Goedicke Prize in Poetry, and a recipient of an AWP Intro Journals Award. He holds an MFA from the University of Alaska Fairbanks and is currently a doctoral student at the University of Utah. His recent work can be found in The Cincinnati Review, Jabberwock Review, Cutbank, and Colorado Review.

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