Forest Lake Cody

At a Behavioral Hospital Sometime After Reading Mrs. Dalloway, I Met a Girl

something awful was about to happen; seeing the
little trapezoid houses we drew that afternoon, skirted
by flowers & suns tucked in corners, how we were

asked to draw a happy place but elizabeth didn’t
have one, how i knew that sealed the deal for me
on her who, silly enough, had wondered if mice

fuck in lab mazes, though, I was certain that doctors
would account for that sort of thing, how all day this
truth-telling cadre of psychotic, depressed & addicted

spoke on the status of me & elizabeth as if we were it-
people like a certain celebrity amanda who was in
the same ward as us, what a lark, what a plunge it was

when we took each other by the hand, put two
on the lookout by the fenced-in lookout & kissed,
bent the porch at pasadena’s las encinas into a nest

miles from my literature class watching the hours,
virginia woolf was with us, her vapors busied the nurses,
with elizabeth’s manicured hand inside my pants, people

with unbrushed hair & teeth gawked at us from inside,
i closed my eyes to suck on elizabeth, that night
i made my bed, sat on her lap but had no shoes to lace

Forest Lake Cody has a degree in cultural anthropology and comparative literature, and works as a cook in Saint Louis. Their work has been published by Jelly Bucket, The Main Street Rag, 300 Days of Sun, Red Noise Collective and more.