The Other Big Bang

By Mason Wray

Featured Art: Peach Bloom by Alice Pike Barney

An equal and opposite burst expanding
from the same particle but in reverse.
Where peaches unripen in the family orchard.
A mom-and-pop deli replaces the condos on Second Ave.
OutKast never breaks up. They only get back together.

My sister is getting smaller by the day
her outfits like pastel pythons swallowing a doe.
In the other big bang, we start
with all the knowledge we’ll ever know
then forget it piece by piece.

So even after my grandmother’s brain
stitches itself whole, vanquishes the plaque
that shows up like coffee stains in scans,
still she becomes more unknowing by the day.

But we all become naïve with her. Everyone
communes over fears of growing young:
how we’ll tie our shoes, cross the road alone.
I am planning an expedition. One day I hope
to have never known you yet.


Mason Wray is a Barry and Susan Hannah Fellow and an MFA candidate at the University of Mississippi. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in Ploughshares, New Letters, and the Southwest Review. He is the poetry editor for Yalobusha Review and lives in Oxford, Mississippi.

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