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Broken Sanctuary - poetry by Sarah Street

It was almost a comfort

to know that we could still dissolve

into ourselves.

The truth

is that a body too familiar with this earth,

with its knife-cut borders and

hand-carved hills and

days so holy we start to believe a god exists,

is a body too long rented – a body that

unravels into

tendons and

bones thick

with maggots. Once, in the imperfect

part of the sea, the body could float;

it could weigh itself like it weighs

its own blood, in teaspoons,

then in buckets. And

its face looked so perfect and real,

muscle so pink

it looked almost gummy.

But we, too,

were fooled

when it crumbled into dust.


Sarah Street is a junior and Writing Fellow at the Westminster Schools in Atlanta, where she also writes for the school newspaper and edits the literary magazine. Her poetry has been featured or is forthcoming in Aerie International, DoveTales: An International Journal of the Arts, Just Poetry National Quarterly, The America Library of Poetry, and Live Poet's Society among others. Sarah’s work has been recognized by the New York Times Student Poetry Contest, the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards, Writing for Peace Young Writers Contest, and River of Words Poetry Project. Sarah's writing frequently explores themes of children's rights and social justice; she is passionate about promoting diversity, advocating for human rights, and inspiring unity through writing, music, and community service.

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