First came the miracles: all the guns melted, the forest fires quenched, one child unwrecked, then three, four, thousands. When she appeared, her halo so deeply rainbowed it gleamed luscious black, the oceans shivered. Riot and strike, emblems of her right hand; text and rough song, emblems of her left. Tenderly, so tenderly, her holy gaze gathered beheaded mountains, plains soaked deep with oil, water-poisoned cities. She stung our lips with the nettles of her mercy until we whispered her newborn name over the bones of our untroubled dead, and rose to save our lives.


Carolyn Oliver’s very short prose and prose poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in SmokeLong Quarterly, Indiana Review, Jellyfish Review, jmww, Unbroken, Tin House Online, Copper Nickel, Midway Journal, and New Flash Fiction Review, among other journals. Carolyn lives in Massachusetts with her family. Links to more of her writing can be found at