Published on Academy of American Poets (


As a child I tossed
all my imaginary friends
out the window of a fast moving train
because I wanted to feel my fist
break open as I freed them,
as each of their bodies
whipped against the siding,
their insides: snow
dispersing into wind,
their little heads rolling
across the yellow plains.

Because I believed they would return.
But none have since.
Not even the ones I didn’t love.


From Leaving Tulsa (University of Arizona Press, 2013). Copyright © 2013 by Jennifer Foerster. Used with the permission of the author.


Jennifer Foerster

Jennifer Elise Foerster is the author of The Maybe-Bird (The Song Cave, 2022); Bright Raft in the Afterweather (University of Arizona Press, 2018); and Leaving Tulsa (University of Arizona Press, 2013). A member of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation of Oklahoma, Foerster has received a Lannan Foundation Writing Residency Fellowship, a National Endowment for the Arts fellowship, and a Wallace Stegner Fellowship in Poetry at Stanford University.

Foerster teaches in the Institute of American Indian Arts’ Low Residency MFA in creative writing and at the Rainier Writing Workshop. She lives in San Francisco.

Date Published: 2017-11-06

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