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About this poet

Gala Mukomolova received an MFA from the University of Michigan. She is the author of Without Protection (Coffee House Press, 2019). A recipient of the 2016 92nd Street Y Discovery/Boston Review Poetry Prize, she runs the Galactic Rabbit website and lives in Brooklyn, New York.

Vasya, in Bed

If you fall asleep now, all the mice will find your bed.
Drawn to the warm life in you, they’ll spend the night

power grooming your small patches of fur     nibbling
on your overgrown toenails.         You don’t want that.

It’s too close.                                     Stay awake, Vasya.
No one’s coming.                                      Breeze is cold.
Pull the covers over your ears.                 Not a woman.
                                              Just the shape of a woman.

Weight presses down on your duvet-lump body     push
the word go from your ghost-wrapped throat. She’ll go.

Not all ghosts mean trouble     —you could let her stay.
                       (To aid sleep, recite the Cyrillic alphabet.)

At the foot of your bed                                 something.
Close your window, keep water by.

That’s a frog’s croak.                           That’s your body.
                               That’s a night bird.

from Without Protection. Copyright © 2019 by Gala Mukomolova. Used with the permission of The Permissions Company, Inc., on behalf of Coffee House Press. 

from Without Protection. Copyright © 2019 by Gala Mukomolova. Used with the permission of The Permissions Company, Inc., on behalf of Coffee House Press. 

Gala Mukomolova

Gala Mukomolova

Gala Mukomolova received an MFA from the University of Michigan. She is the author of Without Protection (Coffee House Press, 2019) and lives in Brooklyn, New York.

by this poet

poem

You don’t love me, you say, and deflate
our air mattress, meeting me at the fold.
                                        We’re in a bad lesbian performance piece

You don’t eat the sandwich I make you.
I puncture your yoga ball. Or, the dog did

poem

You don’t love me, you say, and deflate
our air mattress, meeting me at the fold.
                                     We’re in a bad lesbian performance piece

You don’t eat the sandwich I make you.
I puncture your yoga ball. Or, the dog did.

poem

On the Brighton Beach boardwalk men sit in the rain shelters smelling of piss, shouting drunk genius into the afternoon sun. Men play chess on small portable sets, holding beach umbrellas for cover. Men take care of other men, raising them from wheelchairs and guiding them to benches and it looks just like slow