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C.N.P Poetry 

  • Writer's pictureCathexis Northwest Press

Liminal Space

By: Jo Varnish

A text will distract me –

your text

Any text though, really

We begin with a text

You hold my hands and

we sit on the pier

Fog rises from the water and

we measure out our words

with care, to ensure

that we feel like a story

Stories aren’t real

Open your legs for me –


you whisper

and the thought dances down my spine

I do everything you ask

Open your mind –

you whisper,

no, not that wide

Sometimes there’s silence and

sometimes you sound weird

I don’t like your ideas,

But I don’t say that

Did I tell you I wanted this –


Maybe I did, probably.

Can I change my mind?

No, you’ve decided,

but you call it fate

It’s over and it’s my fault

I can’t keep my word

I can’t be trusted because

I can’t commit

But sometimes I like to text you –


Provoke a response and

relive the story for

an hour or so,

I’ll drag my indifference

across your scab and

feel the rush of emotion ooze out,

while I wait for something real

or more real.


Having moved from her native England aged 24, Jo now lives in Maplewood, New Jersey. Her work (short stories, interviews, reviews) has recently appeared in The Bangalore Review, Necessary Fiction, [PANK] and Funny Pearls. Last year, Jo was a writer in residence at L'Atelier Writers in France. Currently she is studying for her MFA and working on her novel, and can be found on twitter as @jovarnish1.

"I am always interested in the interplay of different flaws and needs in relationships. Specifically, how difficult people can be to the ones they are close to while justifying it to themselves. The fictional relationship depicted is riddled with miscommunications, and ultimately it can't sustain itself. Neither party is wholly right or wholly wrong, this is just what happened when these two characters shared their lives for a while."


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