about the author

Dawn Tefft’s poems appear in Fence, Denver Quarterly, and Bennington Review; her nonfiction in Pleiades, PopMatters, Truthout, and Jacobin; and her fiction in The Account, which recently nominated the piece for a Pushcart Prize. Her chapbooks include Fist (Dancing Girl Press), The Walking Dead: A Lyric (Finishing Line Press), and Field Trip to My Mother and Other Exotic Locations (Mudlark). She holds a PhD in Creative Writing and works as the Executive Director of a higher ed union.

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One Poem 

Dawn Tefft


They came at me with a tube
a way to get inside of me and watch

They were always wanting to see

Each baby an experiment

Each mother a thump and whir
and whack

Sure, there was something to try
and save inside of something else
to try and save, but there was also
a technology of bodies

a mechanic can only be a mechanic
if there are mechanics to work out

prelude to each consent
(to be imagined as a refrain):
repeated attempts to convince
repeated stern faces

a trail of bloody water starting at the bed
a message without content
read differently by each party

converging and diverging points
of interest while an ocean
continued to ocean itself

we were here to figure something

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