Kim Hunter

The Oldest County Fair in Illinois

Watermelon candy lips laugh  
against the corner of my breath 
as teenager sunshine  
splashes across us. 

A stop sign town beneath, 
breathing as steadily as a city without 
someplace to be. 
The trailer park. The ruins of houses. 
The bridge that clatters until your heart  
falls to the tracks below. 

The Ferris Wheel halts, rocking. 

On the edge of this world that built us, 
where no one, and everyone can see, 
we hover,  
afraid to look down.

Winter Prairie Elegy

On the side of the road,  
moon-illuminated gravel turning 
beneath these feet that can’t  
find balance, I stumble.  


On hands and knees I retch into the blades 
of brown grass, frozen into dirty sentinels.

Somewhere, a coyote. Somewhere, a semi growls. 

If words were this night they would howl. 
You are gone.
A snow crystal lands on my eyelash. 
A monster of geometry, pointing in all directions at once. 

Kim Hunter is a queer poet obsessed with small town details juxtaposed with modern sensibilities and ideals. Her work has appeared in Sow’s Ear, HLFQ, Crab Fat Magazine, Blue Heron Review, GRAVEL, and others. When not writing, teaching, rocking the office fantastic, or parenting a half-wolverine child, she is likely voraciously seeking...something. She is currently reclaiming the adjectives men have often ascribed to her, including relentless, bawdy, and terrifying.