Kori Hensell


i hopped the ghost train into this town plowing like a holy fever through hackberry and elm— legato, agitato a dissonant chord of unfinished business. i coursed the intuitive geography of the black warrior running parallel to the tracks tuskalooska will always have, will always be unfinished business.

sold my plasma then gambled all my wealth away; “greentrack pays you money.” i took the leftover to egan’s, earnest hands patiently waiting for the exchange: consume, prance, shrivel, disgorge in the street. who is holding my hair? no one, my hair is short. who is holding my hand? no one. my temper was short. i am hugging myself in a puddle of gin and quinine and Ginuwine.

passed out in church again. here, we wear our nice clothes to the grocery store. “have a nice day,” they always say. baby. darling. baby-darling. sweetheart. pumpkin. sugar. bless our pitiful little hearts. phantom mothers, the affection of apparitions.

i stay up late, the routine of cheap thrills refusing to drift away until I’ve watched dunn’s auto infomercials— grown men in chicken suits wielding baseball bats, bashing in windshields, selling me their precious, coveted eggs.

Kori Hensell is an alumnus of the University of Alabama. She is in a relationship with Tuscaloosa and "It's Complicated."

Pic courtesyof DSmithImages

This piece was originally published in Tuscaloosa Runs This, an anthology of Alabama writers put together after the April 27th tornado. To support the rebuilding process, click here.

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