Instructions to Forget by Emily Banks

Find the carcass of a scarecrow tossed
wind-stripped in a jaundiced field.

His eyes are black beans,
glued askew by a child’s
disobedient and reckless hands.

Bury his corn husk skin, his hard cob bones
where you will never be:

the city of a once, no-longer-friend
(industrial, beaten by stubborn wind),

or with the mother of your first lover,
how she pronounced your name.


Emily Banks is an MFA candidate at the University of Maryland, where she has taught literature, composition, and creative writing courses. Her poems have appeared in the anthology “What Matters” (Jacar Press, 2013), Mikrokosmos, Steam Ticket, Crab Creek Review, and West Trade Review, among others. She was named a finalist in the Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival’s 2015 Poetry Contest, and has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. She lives in Jersey City, NJ. Follow her on twitter at @embanxxx

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