Poet and journalist Ilyse Kusnetz is the author of Small Hours, winner of the 2014 T.S. Eliot prize from Truman State University Press, and The Gravity of Falling (2006). She earned her M.A. in Creative Writing from Syracuse University and her Ph.D. in Feminist and Postcolonial British Literature from the University of Edinburgh. Her poetry and essays have appeared in Crab Orchard Review, Guernica Daily, the Cincinnati Review, Crazyhorse, Stone Canoe, Rattle, and other journals and anthologies. She has published numerous reviews and essays about contemporary American and Scottish poetry, both in the United States and abroad; she has served as a guest editor at Poetry International and the Atlanta Review for feature sections on Scottish poetry.
She is currently at work on a new poetry manuscript—Angel Bones. She teaches at Valencia College and lives in Orlando with her husband, the poet and memoirist Brian Turner.
Just another day in hyper-capitalist society—
in my Facebook feed, news of rabbits and
chickens tortured on meat farms, but I’m still not
vegan and I’m waiting to die myself
from cancer I may have gotten from soil or ground water
contaminated by nuclear weapons, and no amount
of posting uplifting stories is going to fix that.
And lord, let them cease trying to control women’s
bodies, people’s genders, people’s desires,
let them stop hating people because of their color
and ethnicities. I want to shake the bigots and racists
till their teeth come loose and they lose their bite,
till their tongues swell up in their mouths
and they’re stricken mute. I want to save
all the slaughtered animals, save the seas and their