Varicose Veins

My thoughts, they bulge

from the surface of my

skin, swelling and twisting,

oblong blue branches stemming

across gaping valleys of hushed pores.

Suits with crescent scowls

point knives at me, threatening to

slice me open and let the dense

air swallow me whole.


I hide in a music box that plays

off-key carnival tunes, letting my blood

thicken to a viscous concentrate.

With a gentle touch, I squeeze blood

onto page, after page, soaking them

until they drip, saturated. Once


I emerge


from the box, I wring out

the pages over the suits—

their bodies wither

into an ashy heap, and I hear

that same off-key carnival music

on the radio for the first time.

Evan Goetz is an enigma wrapped in chocolate filigree. He is a graduate of the University of South Florida with a B.A. in creative writing. His work can be found in Damfino Press and Digital Papercut among other journals. When he is not writing, he spends his time performing with an improv troupe making a fool of himself.