blueberries // emilie kneifel

a scribble-column about how words taste. like blurbs, sure, but bluer. by poet and critic emilie kneifel.

surface area

terese mason pierre 

geometry blooms, couplets cleave, cleave like crystals, “contours curl and crack to reveal / new layers.” “planes and vertices.” that the minerals in the body cluster toward, swell in the throat like an understanding. as lovers stand in periphery like rock faces. one just as steep — “i pick my way across” — the other just as steady. “as deep as the earth is old.” as “sediment rises / and separates.” “can we, in reality, / excise with grace?” as the world washes through the fingers of each moment, and “the ocean itself // does what it always does,” “and yet again the sun // is not afraid of anything.” all this fond incessancy, offering a model for constant molting. “i’m trying to be a person / who can be built from sand.” “smoothing folds.” a way to break / into softness. 

the pink of the seams

sanna wani

each step is so careful. care full. tip, toe. each word cupped to the lips like nectar. “and let it / drip / down.” each break is so patient. the slow pause of a thousand years. trying, trying to hold steady this world. its meniscus. “a heavy palm / opens / like a sun-soaked / melon” and the poems cannot help but spill. “i can’t quite / hold on to my / heart / anymore.” a singing voice is seen, “kicking a pebble around;” a man, “digging / himself a grave / with his / bare hands.” “you have ten / days in between / now and death / to lurch a few coins / out of the wishing well”— but “the calluses between your toes / are medallions.” “you know how to greet / the mountains.” you are the bird. 

this is where i get off 


a phone note in the middle of the night. weary timestamps so as not to forget. breathless, nearing orgasm or tears. “edge til dawn.” so much glorious unleashed want. bare lamp. a glory of holes. “the honey. the sweet stuff. the nectar. the golden cock.” “i can’t remember a time when it wasn’t all about boys.” but then of course there are stakes. this wideness has shadows. this god language isn’t hyperbole; she hid her porn in a zip up bible. cumshot slobber on the cheek isn’t all of it; “my world is gayer than i have shown you.” a world that says, “i spray myself with Pam, nonstick.” “that was an interesting fantasy, / nearly killed us both.” 

“blueberries” features books by marginalized canadian authors, with a special focus on chapbooks. do you have a chapbook? a chapstick? a blue berry? email queries to emiliekneifel [at] 

Back to blog Next