Photography © Jennifer Matthews


An Inventory of Things I Don’t Ask About Your Death

I never asked how long you laid there,
how long it took the maid to find you there alone.

What did she do with the towels?
Did she throw away the duvet?

I never asked how you looked when they found you,
if you were laying on your back or sitting up.

I wonder often if you had any music playing,
was the heat on or the AC?

I never bothered to ask what exactly you used to take your life,
and now it has been too long, and it is too late to ask.

not like a secret held behind teeth, but like a virus
held back behind a thin cloth mask,

As if the knowledge would infect me,
as if knowing is the same as wanting.


Brennan Staffieri (They/Them) is a queer poet from the Pacific Northwest. They think about Magic: the Gathering about as much as they think about poetry, which is alarming considering they’re currently pursuing their MFA from Pacific University. When they aren’t writing or sleeping, you can often find them around a Dungeons & Dragons table with their friends. They love burritos, The LA Dodgers, and their dog Sendo. thank you for considering their work.

Poet/Photographer Jennifer Matthews’ poetry has been published in Nepal by Pen Himalaya and locally by the Wilderness Retreat Writers Organization, Midway Journal, The Somerville Times, Ibbetson Street Press and Boston Girl Guide. Jennifer was nominated for a poetry award by the Cambridge Arts Council for her book of Poetry Fairy Tales and Misdemeanors. Her songs have been released nationally and internationally and her photography has been used as covers for a number of Ibbetson Street Press poetry books and has been exhibited at The Middle East Restaurant, 1369 Coffeehouses, Sound Bites Restaurant in Somerville and McLean Hospital.