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Jessica Popeski is a Classical Voice and Creative Writing graduate of Brandon University, where she was awarded the Silver Medal in Creative Arts for her thesis, Big Sky. Sickle Moon. Her poetry has been published internationally in Acta Victoriana, The Cadaverine, carte blanche, The Irish Literary Review, Canvas Magazine, Boston Poetry, Room, Leaf Press, The Nervous Breakdown, Hart House Review, The Windsor Review, Harbinger Assylum, Dusie, and more. A recipient of the Ontario Graduate Scholarship, she has just polished off her thesis for the MFA in Creative Writing program at the University of Guelph, and has poetry PhD applications on her horizon. She published two chapbooks with Anstruther Press in 2015: “Oratorio” and “The Wrong Place,” which made the syllabus of an undergraduate English Literature course. She was raised, for the most part, in Moscow, Russia, and Sheffield, England, by her mother and grandmother, and is in the thick of a primary school Teaching Assistantship, having recently rerooted to South Yorkshire from Toronto.


for jessica(s)


when it rains it drizzles ceaselessly

so everything gets soaked

in my dreams I sleep

until six

ribs are scaffolding

stretch skin like cellophane

over leftovers


grated inside out

by a gang

of moths

their hooligan wings

she won’t make it through the night



a purposeful od

on-call to hit

book flight

at the


of a held hand

i text

please keep me posted

twelve times

had a muffin for breakfast

yeah right

auto-correct predicts words

that start with

c will be cat

a for anxiety

binge on radio

shurrup brain

writing worries on vulnerable pink

wet nurse futility



remember her arm in pickle jar juice

up to her elbow

blue bottles belly-up

in the crimps of curtains

kalinka moya!

everyone needs their peck of dirt


a biro explodes its black bowels

in my backpack

bloodies everything

i find a TTC token

and a ten pound note

in the breast pocket of my autumn coat

i am not stung by a bee

her paintings populate my walls

i inherited her cat

he throws himself at the window

at bluetits barking

in the nude arms of an ash

the drill from condo construction

drones the unshakeable f of a


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