Hot Metal Bridge

Current Issue : Number Twenty-Five

At the birth of the first great light


At dusk, she sees girls made of candles; at night, boys with blue pearl feel. Small animals lined up like bowls in the cupboards. When did it start, when did it start. Strong-eyed even in the womb, she says. I’ve got more eyes than bones. More eyes than salt. Tells us how rabbits crawl from her lungs in winter, how her extra heart turns full and fruit. Of course she’s lifting the kitchen’s ruined bulb; of course she’s calling in the seas–just one more thing that wasn’t true until it was.


Melissa Atkinson Mercer is the author of the chapbooks Storm Was Her Voice (forthcoming, Dancing Girl Press, 2016) and After the Miracle Season, which will be published by ELJ Publications in 2017 as part of their Esperanza Editions, a series focusing on mental health awareness. Her work has also been published or is forthcoming in Hermeneutic Chaos Literary Journal and Rust+Moth. She has an M.F.A. from West Virginia University and currently lives in the mountains of North Carolina between a cemetery and a trout stream.