Though that Bush Burned by Lauren Mallett


This one untouched by fire.
Hedged like a soothsayer.
This bush a being rootwire,
an oculus broadening, ombred.
This bush the true story,
This bush god. A God bush.
God as in condemned
to a life of perpetual growth.
Armed with much more than
brambles, for bush is slang, is
the opposite of exodus, is in
some ways heresy. Her way
of removing sandals, one pair
at a time. The way her hair
grows out, her hands unfold
as if in your direction.
The sandals are yours, held
by the bush and all you can do
is reach for her, without
your shoes or any sense
of what she might do. You
step ahead, your toes grip
the dirt, your hands follow
the branch branching out,
you find the end and fold
your fingers there, knot turning
twig and this bush untold.


Lauren Mallett was born in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. She lives in Lafayette, Indiana. She is an MFA candidate and the Assistant Director of Creative Writing at Purdue. This is her first publication.