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‘The Body (in theory)’ - Kelsey Smoot

Kelsey Smoot is the 1st place prize winner of the Spring 2021 Sad Girls Club Poetry Contest

It’s taken me over twenty years to embrace this encasement, manifest of all things queer




lovely still Crooked Sternum is seeking one Surgical Steel Scalpel like manic monarch screeching off with their heads!’

call it crown shyness I avoid touching entire regions of my body like they aren’t there like I’m not there

Don’t see myself in all reflections only the kind ones with hands and tongues try to ignore that something vampiric in my dysphoria a shameful bloodlust Call to memory a time before the great betrayal

assigned fragile at birth


f*g in two acts fair-weather d*ke

finding something elsewhere under the sky under my skin between my legs between my lungs think that I’d rather be bereft of such unimportant flesh and all the things we call ourselves in waking hours savoring only the taut and tender peel only the remnants only the bandage only what is left behind


Kelsey L. Smoot (They/Them/Theirs) is a full-time PhD student in the interdisciplinary social sciences and humanities. They are also a poet, advocate, and frequent writer of critical analysis.


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