by Margaret Cipriano

Forgetting is just a game we play with ourselves. Start
with a paper snowflake—pretty and almost permanent. Remember this.
Remember this until you forget that snow
exists, that earth can be cold enough to
freeze its most wild weather.
In every film, I covet the mask that lets me forget my most favorite
villain. Notice, now, the importance of the word villain. The truth of
is that it’s utterly untranslatable. Even a dust bunny becomes a villakoira,
a wool dog, in Finnish. See how easy it is to be both a bunny and a dog at
See how easy it is to want to rip out your own
throat? I’m torn between the meat and the
trapdoor’s echoing swing. It seems
everything can finish without me, so it’s
best the game knows no end. No rope
hanging from rafters still as paper, no
cow-eyed girl with a penchant for
princesses and mirrors, nothing dangerous
and entirely mine. Mine. Another word
that knows both sides of the coin—
knows what it’s like to be an owner of
things both abundant and explosive.