Brother With Ruger 10.22

I, too, have seen the ancestral photographs,

square grandfathers squatting

against a deer, rifles on their thighs.

The carcass propped up by it’s belly,

a preamble to dinner. Last night,

I dreamed my brother was as glistening

and blond as a wasp. Instinctual.

A murmuring scripture for slaughter.

His eyes, a cluster of tiny

bullets, simmering and dull all at once.

He got his first gun at thirteen.

A whisper of metal, melting into the coils

of his limbs. It is a thing I find all too

nimble. Glassy like the threads of a wing

pinched between my thumb and trigger

finger. A nameless, swooping curve of muscle

braced for the crescendo of a bullet.

EMMA CAMP is a seventeen-year-old poet from Birmingham, Alabama. Her work has been featured in or is forthcoming in Moledro Magazine, SugarRascals,, Rookie, The Blue Marble Review, Alexandria Quarterly, Venus Magazine, Hermeneutic Chaos Journal, and Glass Kite Anthology. Her work has also been honored by Hollins University, Gannon University, The Alabama Writers Forum, and the Jane Lumely Prize.