By Amy LeBlanc

Night Apparition

In a filigree nightgown,
she stands at the edge
of the water carrying
a bloodflower and lady’s lace
as moths nip at her collar.
The horses drink
poisoned water
with bloating sides
and floating specks
in their eyes.
She slits her lip,
she shifts her insides
until she tastes blood.
In her limp grip,
the plants in her palms
swell with newfangled buds-
her rib bones are lined
with nectar and fastened 
with an ivory button.
She has already learned
that the instrument of poison
is a hollow stomach,
but milk and cured petals
can hasten the spoiling along.


Nectar drains from her hips
an apple on the highest branch,
an apricot in the shape of an ear.
You never know who might listen.

She is a collector of scarlet stains
with fragments of skin,
skinned knees, skinned elbows,
skinned legs that begin to swell with fur
for the winter weeks.

They expected her to purr,
to break a membrane made from caul
on the body of a boy who built her to bend
against wooden parts and alcohol.

The well water swells and overflows with seeds.
She bleeds,
and bleeds,
and bleeds.
Red as apple skin against the linen of her tunic.

When the bleeding ends,
she turns to the boy with his wooden limbs
and transforms him into fruit, crisp and tart,
for the birds and the boys to peck at in the heat

Amy LeBlanc holds a BA (Hons) in English Literature and creative writing from the University of Calgary. She is currently non-fiction editor at filling Station magazine. Her work has appeared, or is scheduled to appear in Room, Prairie Fire, Contemporary Verse 2, and EVENT among others. Amy won the 2018 BrainStorm Poetry Contest for her poem ‘Swell’. She is the author of two chapbooks, most recently “Ladybird, Ladybird” published with Anstruther Press in August 2018. @amylia_leblanc (twitter and instagram)