We both felt cold

on our lips: mine,

as I soared under shivering fluorescents, color of

—when it was clean—

the faded minivan mom drove

to an extra shift tonight;

hers, soaring down 88 in that “piece of shit”,

windows rattling, permanently

cracked, no heat.


I scooped the edge

of my blade, stretching

farther than the girls with nothing

to fly to, a bird gliding

through telephone pole legs

and sparking dresses; I flew without fear, blind

to the price of my freedom.


Mom comes home late, to my room;

asks me tonight how well I flew.




Rachel Reilly is currently a senior at the University of Illinois at Chicago where she studies Creative Writing and Gender and Women’s Studies. After graduation, she hopes to pursue an MFA in Creative Writing. Although poetry is her first love, she has yet to publish her work.