West – Ariel Kusby



A rough place I return to often. The wildness of blood between my legs. A savage quiet when the cicadas finally sleep. Heartbreak like hard candy. Slow orange days slicked down with aloe. My feet fighting with the sand. Hammering stakes down. Always conquering something or other. Ribbons of fool’s gold under my boots. My eyes open underwater. Fires burning ancient forests down to the dirt. The claustrophobia of open landscape. My own animal tracks. Deep pockets of rock. Geothermal pools of hot green bloom. Static on my skin and in my hair. The rope trick of a heart. Woman with a gun. A reminder of something I can’t remember. The blood orange darker than you’d expect inside. A body in the distance. A secret with a heartbeat.



Ariel Kusby is a writer and bookseller based in Portland, Oregon. She currently works in the Rose and Orange rooms at Powell’s City of Books, where she pays special attention to children’s books about witches, odd cookbooks, and gnome gardening guides.You can check out her writing at http://www.arielkusby.com.

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