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MacQueen’s Quinterly: Knock-your-socks-off Art and Literature
Issue 6: January 2021
Poem: 125 words
By Lorna Wood

Lion’s Tooth


There is something about the dandelion—
the jagged, toothy, toothsome leaves, 
the bitter, milky straw of the stem, 
the tow-headed soldiers marching across the lawn, 
maddening gardeners. 

After we have admired their starry spread, 
after we have sat, inhaling the petrichor of an Ohio summer, 
weaving our crowns and chains, 
the aliens appear: 

each head a soft, feathery bomb 
inviting us to invest our hopes and dreams, 
our breath itself, in its explosion. 

My lips, that have so long sung the past to me, 
are eager to blow that lion’s tooth away, 
to show how strong two fleshy pink flaps 
and a puff of air can be. 

My eyes close in prayer, the expiration comes—
and after, the mocking dance over the lawn. 


Lorna Wood
Issue 6, January 2021

is a violinist and writer in Auburn, Alabama, with a Ph.D. in English from Yale. Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in After the Pause, Bookends Review, Brave New Word, Cacti Fur, Coastal Shelf, DASH, Escape Wheel (great weather for MEDIA), Gnu, Leaves of Loquat V, Luminous Echoes, M58, North of Oxford, and Poetry WTF?! among others. Poetry South nominated her “Etheree for Heather Heyer” for a Pushcart Prize and reposted it 2020 in support of “a national reckoning on race.” Her fiction, creative nonfiction, and scholarly essays have also been published.

Further details at her website, https://lornawoodauthor.wordpress.com, and on Amazon.

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