Sheila Dong is the author of Moon Crumbs (Bottlecap Press, 2019).
Their work has appeared or is forthcoming in Heavy Feather Review,
Juke Joint, Gone Lawn, Rogue Agent, and Rust + Moth, among other
places. Sheila holds an MFA from Oregon State University and lives in
Tucson, Arizona (USA). Find out more at

lucid dreams

i married the dark-
haired man at the pedestrian
crossing in another life.
that's our toddler he steers
in a daffodil stroller.
on campus, the girl
with a wrist brace and cross
pendant is my shadow-
dimension one-night stand.
she has a pet rat,
i can just feel it.
turtles snap at the surface
of the pond, bite a hole
in my otherworld heart.
my favorite part
of the day is riding the bus,
how things pass by
so quickly that by the time
i think of their names
they are long
gone, another dream: fire
hydrant. ballet billboard.
backyard and a doghouse
with a jesus statue inside.

made in america

see the beauty heave its music,
boil its jacarandas
into beer. see the beauty run
for office, eyeless all dreamday,
paper crown.
the voice i hate myself in
belongs to a baby
boomer in a polo shirt and khakis.
nevertheless, i write cover letters,
haunt dollar
stores and huff the scented lotions
'til i'm mostly okay.
i would ask that wish lantern
fiasco of a sun
how it crushes mist, how
it makes its millions, but i know
it'd cook me into kindling,
then eat my ass for good measure.

the fiend as a young girl

quiet, prim demon / purple tongue / thumber-through of halloween catalogs / the plushies on her bed emit haunted house sounds / in the heat she faints / sees a city on the sun, devoured / by brightness / heaven below / hell above / she puts in her teeth and goes trick-or-treating / candy-brimming car trunks in a church parking lot / no ghoulish or satanic costumes, please / oops / oh well / the dark scares her / but not the mornings when she wakes up paralyzed / dreambody lagging behind consciousness / if i concentrate hard enough, the spell will break / she sleeps with her face to the hole in the wall

in vitro

i hook a sample from the meatiest part of my thigh. place it in a crystal dish under red light. embroider it with wires and sugar needles and beeping little canaries. only the softest agar for my baby, the gentlest pulses from the titanium nurse. the infrastructure is in place, a pink lattice with budding sisters, all of them soon to sigh as one. o floater in my eye, o twinge in my ovary, every day you grow more muscular. somewhere in your myofibrils there must be eyes to see me for everything i am. monster mother, careful cook. soon, i will simmer you in oil. season you in sharp and pungent leaves. i will serve you with red wine to my loves and enemies.

Back to Front.